Blinken to King Abdullah II: US respects Jordan’s Temple Mount stewardship

The Secretary of State and the King expressed support for the ceasefire between Israel and Hamas and other groups in the Gaza Strip.

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US Secretary of State Antony Blinken met on Wednesday with Jordan’s King Abdullah II in Amman and discussed the recent ceasefire between Hamas and Israel, and Jordan’s role in the matter.

Blinken and the monarch expressed support for the ceasefire between Israel and Hamas and other groups in the Gaza Strip, and discussed measures to ensure it holds, the US State Department said in a summary of the meeting.

The US diplomat reiterated that “Palestinians and Israelis equally deserve to live safely and securely and to enjoy equal measures of freedom, prosperity and democracy,” and discussed how Jordan and the US can help promote these principles in the neighboring territory.

The US Secretary of State assured the US’ respect for “the special role of Jordan in the holy sites in Jerusalem” and restated the US’ commitment to the historic status quo at the Temple Mount, which was a flashpoint for the recent conflict.

Tensions have been high between Israel and Jordan over the Temple Mount, where the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound is administered by the Wakf Islamic religious trust. The status quo only allows Muslim worshippers to pray at the site, which is the third holiest site in Islam and Judaism’s most holy site.

Blinken and Abdullah II also discussed regional developments, including Iraq and Syria, for which the Secretary commended the King for Jordan’s leadership in supporting peace in the region.

They two also reaffirmed the strength of the US-Jordanian strategic partnership and expressed a shared desire to make it even stronger.

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