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March 9, 2015 9:26 pm

Jordanian Foreign Minister’s Trip to Iran Draws Speculation About Pivot Towards Tehran

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Jordan's Foreign Minister, Nasser Joudeh, recently visited Iran. PHOTO: Jordanian Foreign Ministry.

A recent visit to Tehran by Jordan’s foreign minister Nasser Joudeh has raised questions about the purpose of the trip, notably whether it was the first step in building a future relationship between the two countries, Al-Jazeera reported.

This recent Jordanian overture surprised many political observers and analysts in Amman including entities both supporting and opposing the government of Prime Minister Abdullah Ensour, since neither Iran nor Jordan gave any indications of a shift in relations before the visit.

According to the report, the Jordanian government maintained a high level of secrecy over the details of the visit this past Saturday to the Iranian capital, with the exception of a brief official statement issued by the Jordanian News Agency. The statement only noted that Foreign Minister Joudeh visited Iranian President Hassan Rouhani and handed him a handwritten letter from King Abdullah II.

The Jordanian Foreign Ministry declared months ago that it was assigning a new Jordanian ambassador to Tehran, Abdullah Abu Raman, but it tried to minimize expectations over the future course of relations between the countries. At the time, Jordanian officials leaked that the appointment of the ambassador was a mere diplomatic formality, and nothing more.

The Jordanian king has voiced concerns in the past over Iranian regional designs, and years ago issued a famous warning against the danger of the “Shi’a Crescent” to the security and stability of the region.

Both opposition and pro-government political entities in Amman maintained their silence over the visit, noting that they lacked any information regarding the reasons for the visit or its goals.

The leadership of the Muslim Brotherhood told Al-Jazeera that the Brotherhood preferred patience before formulating a position over the Jordanian move, in order to clarify the reasons and purpose of the visit before making any decisions.

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  • Paul Cerar

    No, the Jordanian Foreign Minister is probably begging the lunatic fascist dictatorship of Iran to not detonate nuclear weapons on Israel. Nuclear blasts and radioactive fallout do not respect national borders.

    Paul Cerar
    Toronto, Canada

    • David McCance McCance

      I thought it was isreal that had nuclear weapons?

  • E Pluribus Wombat

    They said they had to do something about ISIS at their door. What did Obama imagine would happen. This is likely from prodding BY the White House.

  • Jack Holan

    Jordan is one of the closest Arab-Western orientated Allies the USA has in the ME. Yet, the Obama Administration, through weakness, uncertainty, lack of focus and ineptness has managed to cause a panic in the Arab Wrold whereby they are now hedging their bets; something they didn’t do before with Strong Leadership guiding them. Egypt is another staunch Arab Ally, keeper of the 1979 Peace Agreement with Israel kicked under the bus for the terrorist Muslim Brotherhood and Obama still does not embrace General Sisi. Israel, our key Ally in the Region is being berated publicly, by Obama as if were an enemy State.but Iran almost got a sweet heart deal is talked about as a potential partner in the War against IS. Obama, 6-years it to you to unravel 50 years+ of Foreign Policy both Democrats and Republicans felt justified pursuing.

  • Jonah

    Beleive me utilize patience or extreme caution when attempting to under handedly deal with Jordan. Red lines in Gods eyes are something you only cross if you are willing to jeapordize your country and your life. Jordan will do what God has planned scripturally for them and if they attempt to sidestep him they will be severely punished. If Iran attempts to utilize Jordan as a mechanism for moving troops closer to Israels borders they will face something similar to what happened to Cora and her cohorts as they opposed Moses. God has your back on this one.

  • Avi

    Backdrop is interesting here, I.e: Jordan has been the most consistent Arab country to take on ISIS. The concern is obviously Iran’s critical fighting role in retaking Tikrit recently and increased control over Iraq. Re Jordan, Reagan’s Trust but Verify motto seems to be appropriate: Jordan is and has been a close friend but a rapprochement with Iran would be very concerning. End of day though, I would give Abdullah, who is smart, moderate, and well liked, benefit of the doubt.