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Palestine-Jordan generates gerrymander and injustice

By David Singer - posted Wednesday, 5 August 2009

Jordan - 77 per cent of former Palestine - moved recently to start revoking the citizenship of 70 per cent of its population who originated from the remaining 23 per cent of former Palestine - today called Israel, the West Bank and the Gaza Strip.

In doing so Jordan’s Interior Minister Nayef Al-Kadi stressed: “We insist that Jordan is not Palestine, just as Palestine is not Jordan."

The speciousness of Mr Al-Kadi’s argument is exposed on the official website of Jordan’s late King Hussein - who died in 1999 - in which the late King stated: “The majority of Jordan’s [then] population of 4.4 million people are Arabs descended from various tribes that have migrated to the area over the years from all directions.”


Arab spokesmen from both sides of the Jordan River have asserted for decades that there is no cultural religious or ethnic difference between Arabs living on either side of the Jordan River.

King Hussein himself stated in his book Uneasy Lies The Head (1962): “Palestine and Jordan were both under the British Mandate, but as my grandfather pointed out in his memoirs they were hardly separate countries. Transjordan being to the east of the Jordan River, it formed in a sense, the interior of Palestine.”

Abu Iyad told the Near East Report on January 8, 1990: “You cannot make distinctions between a Jordanian and a Palestinian. It is true that we encourage unity between Arab peoples but the relation between Jordan and Palestine in particular is clearly distinctive; all those who tried in the past and are still trying to create divisions between the Jordanian and Palestinian people have failed. We indeed constitute one people.”

Yasser Arafat told Der Spiegel (No.29/1986): “Indeed Palestinians and Jordanians are one people. No one can divide us.”

The Crown Prince of Jordan wrote in Foreign Affairs in 1982: "Small as Jordan is, our country is politically, socially, economically, militarily and historically inseparable from the Palestinian issue.”

Jordan’s latest decision to revoke the citizenship of its majority population was stated by Mr Al-Kadi to have been made at the request of the PLO and the Arab world to consolidate the status of the PLO as the sole legitimate representative of the Palestinian people - heaping one fiction on another as the PLO is locked in a deadly struggle for power against Hamas that sees no prospect of being resolved.


Those Jordanians who have their citizenship revoked will suffer serious financial hardship and loss of rights guaranteed by Articles 5 -23 of the Jordanian Constitution.

Article 20 of the Constitution provides:

Elementary education shall be compulsory for Jordanians and free of charge in Government schools.

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About the Author

David Singer is an Australian Lawyer, a Foundation Member of the International Analyst Network and Convenor of Jordan is Palestine International - an organisation calling for sovereignty of the West Bank and Gaza to be allocated between Israel and Jordan as the two successor States to the Mandate for Palestine. Previous articles written by him can be found at

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