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August 5, 2016 2:01 am

July 31: The Day a Million Palestinians Lost Their Citizenship

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Jordan's King Hussein I.  Photo: DoD/Helene C. Stikkel.

Jordan’s King Hussein I. Photo: DoD/Helene C. Stikkel.

July 31 is a very big anniversary in Palestinian Arab history. Yet among all the anniversaries that Palestinians mark, I didn’t see anyone talking about this one.

On July 31, 1988, Jordan’s King Hussein announced that — at the PLO’s request — he was cutting all administrative and legal ties with Arabs who lived on the West Bank of the Jordan River.

With the stroke of a pen, more than a million Palestinians went from being Jordanian citizens to becoming citizens of nothing.

King Hussein, for his part, said that he was doing this for the Palestinians’ own good: “Our goal is the benefit of the Palestinian cause and the Arab Palestinian people.”

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Rich and well-connected Palestinians managed to hold on to their citizenship, of course. Mahmoud Abbas is a Jordanian citizen, as are other top PA and Fatah officials.

There were about a million Arabs living in the West Bank in 1988.

July 31 is the anniversary of a million Palestinians suffering from a real disaster. But since it was done by Arab leaders, and supposedly for their own good, no one talks about it.

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  • harold

    “There is, in fact, almost nothing un-Palestinian about Jordan except for the royal family.

    The Jordanian capital, Amman, is the largest and most populated Palestinian city anywhere.

    The world has been living with a two-state solution for decades. No matter what the faux King of Jordan may say or do.