Jordan sentences former top courtier to 15 years in jail over alleged plot

Jordan sentences former top courtier to 15 years in jail over alleged plot
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Islam News – A Jordanian court on Monday sentenced a former royal chief adviser, Bassem Awadallah, and a minor royal to 15 years in jail for their involvement in an alleged plot to bring a deposed crown prince to power instead of the king.

The military court said it had confirmed evidence backing the charges against the pair and that they had both been determined to harm the monarchy by pushing former heir to the throne Prince Hamza as an alternative to King Abdullah.

“The two defendants held views that are against the political system and the monarchy and sought to create chaos and sedition in Jordanian society,” said the judge.

Awadallah, a former finance minister who was a driving force behind Jordan’s liberal economic reforms, was charged with agitating to undermine the political system and committing acts that threaten public security and sowing sedition.

The 57-year-old Western educated economist, whose closeness to the monarch over many years had enraged a conservative political establishment that holds power within the army and security forces, was once praised by King Abdullah for “his distinguished service to his country.”

He was forced to resign as royal court chief in 2008 after lobbying by an old guard of politicians and influential tribal figures opposed to his free market reforms.

Awadallah pleaded not guilty in the secretly held trial, which his lawyer, former U.S. federal prosecutor Michael Sullivan, said had not been fair and lacked due process.

Source:  Reuters


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