Jordan’s King Abdullah and Estranged Prince Hamza Make First Joint Appearance Since Rift

April 11, 2021 Updated: April 11, 2021

AMMAN—Jordan’s King Abdullah and former crown prince and half-brother Prince Hamza made their first joint appearance since a rift shook the country, attending a ceremony on April 11 marking 100 years of independence.

State media showed the monarch and other members of the royal family laying wreaths at the memorial to the unknown soldier and tombs of royalty in the Raghdan palace in Amman.

Jordan’s King Abdullah and Prince Hamzah
Jordan’s King Abdullah II, second right, Prince Hamzah bin Al Hussein, fourth right in blue mask, Prince Hassan bin Talal, fifth right, and others arriving to visit the tombs of former kings, in Amman, Jordan, on April 11, 2021. (Royal Court Twitter Account via AP)

Hamza pledged allegiance to King Abdullah late on April 5 following mediation by the royal family, two days after the military warned him over actions that it said were undermining Jordan’s security and stability.

On April 7, in the first statement since the affair came to light, King Jordan said sedition had been quashed and Hamza was “under my care” with his family at his palace.

The monarch said the crisis was “the most painful” because it came from both inside the royal family and outside it.

Hamza’s absence after he appeared in a video on April 3 saying he had been ordered to stay at home and accused the country’s rulers of corruption and authoritarian rule led to speculation about his whereabouts.

Jordan King and Prince
(L) King of Jordan Abdullah II addresses the European Parliament in Strasbourg, France, Jan. 15, 2020. (Vincent Kessler/Reuters). (R) Jordan’s Crown Prince Hamza bin Hussein delivers a speech to Muslim clerics and scholars at the opening ceremony of a religious conference at the Islamic Al al-Bayet University in Amman, Jordan, on Aug. 21, 2004. (Ali Jarekji/Reuters)

In announcing last week that the military had warned Hamza over his actions, the government said that Hamza had liaised with people linked to foreign parties seeking to destabilize Jordan and that he had been under investigation for some time.

Hamza had been widely expected to succeed Abdullah as Jordan’s next king, until the monarch made his own son, Prince Hussein, heir instead in 2004, in line with family tradition.

By Suleiman Al-Khalidi