By Afro-Middle East Centre

Prior to the 2011 uprisings, the Jordanian branch of the Muslim Brotherhood was influential in Jordan’s politics and society. The Brotherhood participated in elections, ran social institutions, and was one of very few organisations that was able to straddle the Jordanian–Palestinian identity divide. The uprisings initially augmented its powers, and in 2011 and 2012 the Brotherhood widened its appeal, organising large protests. However the nature of the Jordanian political system, the stance of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), and the Brotherhood’s decision not to participate in Jordan’s elections have since severely diminished its influence. The Brotherhood is now undergoing a process of introspection and, in the light of the GCC decision to declare it a terrorist organisation, it is reasserting its support for the monarch in an attempt to remain viable relevant.

 By Afro-Middle East Centre

For the third time in only six years, parliamentary elections were held in the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan on 23 January. Again, there was little suspense about the possible outcome. Cosmetic reforms were implemented in the past two years, but had not persuaded the public or the political opposition that meaningful change was on the way. The parliament was again composed of independent candidates, rather than political blocs which could seriously oppose the will of King Abdullah II. The elections did not signify a break with the past and Jordan’s ‘democracy’ remains as shallow and the king’s  path to reform as slow and hollow as ever.

By Afro-Middle East Centre

The 31 March agreement between Palestinian Authority President Mahmud Abbas and Jordan’s King Abdullah II, in which the two leaders expressed their ‘common goal to defend’ the many holy sites in East Jerusalem from the continued threat of Judaisation may be the first step in initialising a radical alteration in the nature and proposed solution to the current Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

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