April 4, 2024 Special Dispatch No. 11251

Jordanian Regime Furious With Hamas, Muslim Brotherhood: They Are Acting To Foment Chaos In Kingdom In Service Of Iran

April 4, 2024
Iran, Jordan, Palestinians | Special Dispatch No. 11251

Since Hamas' October 7, 2023 terror attack, and against the backdrop of the war in Gaza, which has been ongoing for six months, Jordan has seen a surge in popular support for Hamas and hostility towards Israel, which are expressed in many anti-Israel demonstrations and in explicit calls to confront it and wage jihad against it.[1]

Recently there has been an increase in the size and intensity of these demonstrations, which are organized primarily by the Muslim Brotherhood (MB) in Jordan. The protests take place throughout the country, but one of their main sites is around the Israeli embassy in Amman's Al-Rabia area, where thousands of young men gather every evening after the iftar (end-of-fast meal) to "besiege the embassy building."[2] The masses that participate in these protests call to revoke the peace agreement with Israel, sever the relations with it and open the border crossings between the two countries "in order to let the young Jordanians help their brethren in Palestine."[3] On several occasions demonstrators tried to break through the police barriers and reach the embassy itself, but were pushed back by security officers. The crowd responded by directing condemnation, physical violence and even accusations of treason and collaboration with Israel at the security officers.[4]

In addition to calls to revoke the peace agreement with Israel, the protesters also express support for Hamas, praise its military commanders Muhammad Deif, Yahya Sinwar and Abu Obeida, extol the October 7 attack and the armed struggle against Israel and call to expel the American ambassador from Jordan.[5] Calls of rebellion against the king have been heard as well.[6] At a demonstration in the city of Al-Zarqa, protesters sang a patriotic song in praise of the king while replacing his name with that of Hamas spokesman Abu Obeida.[7] On March 30, there were violent protests in the vicinity of the Al-Baqa'a camp, the largest Palestinian refugee camp in Jordan. The protesters started fires and threw stones, causing several of them to be arrested.[8]

The recent escalation of the protests in Jordan coincides with calls addressed to the Jordanian people by Hamas officials and by MB officials in Jordan and beyond, who urged Jordanians  to escalate their protests and join the fight against Israel in order to "mingle their blood with that of the Palestinians," as Hamas' leader abroad, Khaled Mash'al, put it. Similar calls from Hamas officials to the people of Jordan were also heard at the beginning of the war in Gaza.[9]

This incitement of the Jordanian public by Hamas and MB officials enraged the Jordanian establishment. Initially, this establishment thought that adopting Hamas' rhetoric[10] would protect it from the public fury, but it seems that this tactic has been unsuccessful, and that Hamas' propaganda and incitement has weakened Jordan and today even threatens to destabilize the regime.[11]   

Jordanian regime officials, including government spokesman Muhannad Al-Mubaidin, Senate President Faisal Al-Fayez and former information minister Samih Al-Ma'aita harshly attacked the Hamas leadership, accusing it of inciting the Jordanians against their regime, of populism and of political immaturity, and warned it not to continue this. Al-Ma'aita claimed that Hamas is trying to pressure Jordan to allow it to operate from its territory again, and called to revoke the Jordanian citizenship of Hamas officials who do this, and of their families. 

Jordan, it appears, perceives that Hamas' and the MB's incitement is carried out in the service of Iran, which seeks to overthrow the Jordanian regime and open up another front against Israel in Jordan. In the recent months there have been growing concerns in Jordan regarding subversive Iranian action within the kingdom, amid increasing attempts by elements controlled by Iran to smuggle drugs and arms into Jordan over the Syrian border. The January 28 drone attack carried out by Iran-backed militias in Iraq against a U.S. logistics support base in Jordan, in which three U.S. troops were killed,  intensified these fears even further.[12] Moreover, on April 2, Abu Ali Al-Askari, an official of the Iraqi Hizbullah Brigades, revealed operative plans to establish a Jordanian militia with 12,000 armed members that would be subordinate to the Iran-led resistance axis.[13] In response, Jordanian government spokesman Al-Mubaidin said that "Jordan is not interested in responding to militias whose hands are stained with blood and which are one of the reasons for the instability in the region," but that the Jordanian authorities are following this matter with concern.[14] Former information minister Al-Ma'aita, for his part, said that Jordan realizes that these militias are subordinate to Iran, which has been trying to infiltrate Jordan for 40 years, but clarified that Jordan has an army to defend it.

The Jordanian fury at Hamas, the MB and Iran also found expression in articles in the Jordanian press, which stated that the protests in Jordan are the product of a plot by Iran and the MB against the kingdom. A senior Jordanian journalist warned the MB not to cooperate with Iran's regional plan "that aims to eliminate any Sunni armed force in the region." Another Jordanian writer stated that Hamas' incitement against Jordan was meant to create chaos in the kingdom and that this is ingratitude on Hamas' part, hinting at Jordan's involvement in saving the life of Hamas leader Khaled Mash'al after Israel tried to poison him in Jordan in 1997.

Jordanian security officers face protesters near the Israeli embassy in Amman (Image: Al-Quds Al-Arabi, London, March 26, 2024)

This report presents the responses of Jordanian officials and journalists to the Hamas and MB incitement against Jordan.

Hamas Is Fanning Protests In Jordan, Encouraging A "Siege On The Enemy's Embassy"

As stated, amid the intensive protests that have recently been taking place in Jordan, especially the protests every evening in front of the Israeli embassy in Amman, on March 27 Hamas' military wing, the 'Izz Al-Din Al-Qassam Brigades, republished a short segment of the statement delivered by Al-Qassam commander Muhammad Deif about Hamas' October 7 attack. In the segment in question, he called on the Jordanians and others to join Hamas' war against Israel, saying: "O our people in Jordan, Lebanon, Egypt, Algeria, the Arab Maghreb [i.e., North Africa], Pakistan, Malaysia, Indonesia and all over the Arab and Islamic world! Start advancing on Palestine today. Right now, not tomorrow. Do not let the borders, the regimes and the restrictions deprive you of the honor of waging jihad and participating in the liberation of the Al-Aqsa Mosque."[15]

The same day, Khaled Mash'al, Hamas leader abroad, addressed the participants of an iftar meal held by the women's branch of the Jordanian Muslim Brotherhood (MB) movement. Speaking from Qatar, he said that Jordan is "a dear country, the country closest to Palestine, whose men and women are  expected more than others to play a role" in helping Palestine. He added: "We continue to urge the nation to join the fray and mingle its blood with the blood of the people of Palestine, so that we gain honor and so that the conflict will be decided in our favor, Allah willing." Mash'al praised "the millions who have taken to the streets for the sake of Palestine" and called to encourage this and make it an ongoing activity, which has indeed occurred.[16]

Furthermore, in a March 29 meeting in Tehran between Hamas political bureau head Isma'il Haniya and Ziad Al-Nakhaleh, secretary-general of the Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ), the two called "on all the sectors of the nation to expand the circle of challenging the occupation by every legitimate means and to express fury [towards it]..." They welcomed "the growing efforts invested [in this] by the people, the religious scholars and the [political] parties in many Arab and Muslim countries, especially in the sister-country of Jordan, and the siege imposed on the enemy's embassy [in Amman]." They exhorted "the peoples and religious scholars of the nation to continue their efforts and activity and their national and Islamic role."[17] 

MB figures outside Jordan also incited the public there. The Mufti of Libya, Sadiq Al-Ghariani, who belongs to the MB, ruled that the security forces in Jordan and Egypt "are not allowed to defend the Zionists," and that doing so doing "constitutes joining the Zionists and collaborating with them in killing Muslims."[18]

Jordanian Government Spokesman: The Incitement By Hamas' Officials Is Populism And Political Immaturity

The incitement by the Hamas and MB officials amid the escalating street protests in Jordan enraged the Jordanian regime. The online daily Rai Al-Youm quoted an official Jordanian source as saying that "several Hamas officials have violated the unwritten agreement [between us] and the movement's leadership, that its leaders will not directly address the [Jordanian] people or tribes.[19]

In an interview with Sky News Arabia, government spokesman Muhannad Al-Mubaidin condemned Hamas' incitement of the Jordanians and "the desperate attempts to disrupt our compass and our focus, as a state, [on the Palestinian issue]." He added: "We hope that the Hamas officials will strictly [confine] their advice and their calls to keeping the peace and encouraging our people in the Gaza Strip to stand fast. Jordan is a sovereign country with constitutional sources of authority... King Abdullah II spearheads the Arab position [on Gaza], and we will not heed [Hamas'] occasional [expressions of] political immaturity, nor those who want to gain popularity by exploiting the destruction that has befallen Gaza as a result of this disastrous war."

Al-Mubaidin went on to say: "The Jordanian position is honorable and moral, and we appreciate [the fact that] the people have come out to call for and demand an end to this war. This is not at odds with the position that Jordan has taken since the very first day of this war... [But] there are contemptable ideologies and populists that want to incite the [Jordanian] public by playing on its sentiments... This is bankruptcy on the part of the forces that want to malign Jordan's position or compel it to choose other options..." He ended by stressing that "peace is our strategic choice, and it is the peace agreement [with Israel] that allows us to play our role in easing the pressure on the people of the West Bank."[20]    

Speaking with the Jordanian Al-Mamlaka channel, Al-Mubaidin said: "Since the beginning of this war, the Jordanians have taken to the streets in a national, honorable, responsible and law-abiding manner in order to express their support for the people of Gaza, but some elements want to hijack the [Jordanian] street in a populist way." He added that supporting Palestine requires Jordan to be "strong and united" and free of chaos, and denied that people who protest in support of Gaza are arrested and beaten, saying that those arrested are people who "wish to clash with the General Security forces, engage in extortion and fray [everyone's] nerves." The security forces, he emphasized, are only doing their job. "When protesters, men and women, start speaking disrespectfully to the General Security [officers], and provoke them with slogans and claims such as 'you are being paid to defend this [Israeli] embassy,' it is not representative of Jordan's men and women."[21]

Former Information Minister: Hamas Officials Should Be Stripped Of Their Jordanian Citizenship

Former Jordanian information minister Samih Al-Ma'aita, who is considered close to the regime, attacked the Hamas leaders sitting in Qatar and accused them of inciting the Jordanian tribes, and the people of Jordan in general, against the state. Their aim of these leaders, he said, is to harm Jordan and its security and pressure it to change its position on Hamas, so it would allow them to return to its territory – and all this while presenting themselves as controlling the Jordanian public. He therefore called on the authorities to revoke the Jordanian citizenship of Palestinians who incite against the kingdom: [22]

To view this clip on MEMRI TV, click here or below:

On his X account, Al-Ma'aita again called on the authorities to revoke the citizenship of Hamas officials: "The state must seriously consider revoking the citizenship of Palestinian faction officials and their family members if they incite against Jordan's security and act to agitate the Jordanian street in a way that undermines Jordan and its stability. This category includes the leaders of non-Jordanian organizations that seek to spark chaos in Jordan and therefore do not deserve this treat [i.e., Jordanian citizenship]."[23]

In another interview, with Al-Arabiya TV, Al-Ma'aita again accused Hamas officials of deliberately inciting the Jordanian people against their regime and leadership. He said that at the start of the Israel-Hamas war, a certain Hamas official in Qatar – i.e. Khaled Mash'al – had incited the Jordanian tribes to take to the streets, which had a negative impact, and that "later this same person... conveyed messages to the [Jordanian] state via mediators, apologizing and saying he had made a mistake. But recently, just a week ago, he once again made inflammatory statements to the Jordanian people, urging [them] to take to the streets and saying that their blood should mingle with the blood [of the Palestinians]... As a result we saw a change in the [Jordanian] protests in support of Gaza, [calls] to attack the Jordanian political regime, the state leadership and the army, attacks on security personnel, and riots in the Al-Baqa'a refugee camp [in Jordan]." Al-Ma'aita reiterated that Hamas' aim is to ignite the Jordanian street and pressure Jordan to reopen the Hamas offices in the kingdom.[24]

In a different interview, Al-Ma'aita responded to the remarks of Abu Ali Al-Askari, of the Iraqi Hizbullah Brigades, about operational preparations to establish a militia in Jordan numbering 12,000 armed men, saying: "Jordan understands that this is a case of extortion and of Iranian efforts to exploit the situation in Jordan... These militias are subordinate to Iran and the IRGC," he said, and added that this is part of "Iran's attempt to gain influence in Jordan by means of a militia... and in any way [possible]." He went on to say that, "for the past 40 years Iran has been trying to infiltrate Jordan, as it has infiltrated other Arab countries and managed to control them by means of the militias subordinate to it. We in Jordan understand that the issue is not Gaza or Palestine... That is a lie, because if they wanted to go to Palestine and fight against Israel, they [already] have two arenas that are under Iranian patronage [and are adjacent to Israel]," namely Syria and Lebanon. He clarified that Jordan has capabilities and a strong army to defend it.[25]

President Of Jordanian Senate: I Clarified To The Hamas Leadership And MB That If They Trifle With Jordan's Security,  It Will Not Be To Their Advantage

In an interview with the Al Mashhad TV channel,  Faisal Al-Fayez, president of the Jordanian Senate, said, "I have a relationship with Khaled Mash'al that is based on mutual respect... [and so] I conveyed a clear message to the leadership of Hamas and the MB that they must not harm Jordan's security." Jordanian society, he added, is founded on checks and balances and Hamas and the MB are aware of this, "and if they harm Jordan's social fabric, it will not benefit either them or Jordan. This is a ticking bomb."

Al-Fayez asserted that "Jordan will not hesitate to call out any element that seeks to fray the strings of social stability in the country, and that the very fact that he has addressed the leaders of Hamas and the MB and warned them not to agitate the Jordanian street constitutes an accusation levied against them." He noted that he has discerned a change in Hamas' position and added, "Khaled Mash'al knows Jordan well. The Jordanian state allowed him to visit the kingdom, and so his stance astonishes me." Responding to claims that the events in Jordan are part of the Iranian expansionist plan for the region, Al-Fayez said, "Jordan is a strong country... the Jordanian people are united around the rule of the king," and added, "We have coped with many challenges."[26]

Former Government Spokesman: The Jordanians Will Not Take Orders From Anyone Except Their Own State

Criticism of the Hamas officials' incitement was also voiced by Muhammad Al-Momani, a former spokesman of the Jordanian government and currently the secretary-general of the National Charter Party. In an interview with the state daily Al-Rai, he defended Jordan's "honorable position" that supports the Palestinian people and "has always been very close to Palestine and defended it," saying that "nobody can cast doubt on this." He went on to say that "any incitement by external elements aimed at undermining [Jordan's] national stability is reprehensible and provokes each and every Jordanian. The Jordanians will not take orders or advice from anyone except their own state... Jordan is a cultured and open country, and its [people] have a right to express their opinion however they please, but there is a basic condition that must be adhered to: the law must not be violated. Therefore, processions that involve slogans that violate the law and the constitution, and processions that involve clashes with the security forces and [damaging] public property, are unacceptable, and the truth is the Jordanians view them with considerable anger and suspicion ..."[27]

Articles In Jordanian Press: Hamas, Along With MB And Iran, Is Fomenting Chaos In Jordan

The Jordanian fury with Hamas also found expression in the Jordanian press, in articles that harshly attacked this movement as well as the MB and Iran.

Senior Jordanian Journalist Calls On MB Not To Be Deceived By Iran

In an article titled "A Word Of Advice To The Muslim Brotherhood, before It's Too Late" Shhadeh Abu Bakr, the chairman of the board of the state daily Al-Rai, hinted that the one behind the attempt to harm Jordan was Iran and called on the MB not to be deceived by this country. He wrote: "...There is a regional [Iranian] plan that the MB and all other discerning Arabs and Muslims are familiar with. This plan is making achievements and spreading every day, and its supreme goal is to eliminate every Sunni armed force throughout the region – not by means of [Iran's] own apparatuses, but rather by means of apparatuses belonging to others, which are terror forces... This regional plan is at odds with the Zionist plan, but only when it comes to dividing up the loot [taken from] the Arabs, for each of them wants to receive the bigger portion of the prey...

"That is the plan, and this is happening today amid the Arab lack of unity that gives this regional plan the freedom to take exclusive control of Arab countries, one after the other, in the guise of 'hating Israel' and supporting the Palestinian cause, using the method of taqiyya...[28]

"My advice to the MB – if they would only listen – is: be soldiers of Jordan and do not be deceived by things you hear beyond its borders that are aimed at shattering our unity with Gaza and the rest of Palestine. Preserve our sacred national unity with Jordan and Palestine, and be confident that every citizen on this pure Jordanian soil is deeply hurt by any despicable call or curse [directed at] the members of our national security [forces] and by any belittling of Jordan's role...

"Jordan alone is being threatened and targeted for a significant attack, and you surely understand that. It needs you to stand with it, for you are its sons and it has not given up on you, whereas the others have, and you know it. Jordan is a country that will never allow its people's unity to be shattered, and will not allow chaos to be sowed in its [public] squares, [a goal] that many outside its borders plan for, hope for and act [to achieve]. Do not be among those who do this to your dear homeland, which, as you know, is working and making efforts for Palestine, all on its own.

"Do not burden Jordan with more than it can bear. Place your hand in the hand of the country and the king, and our people will appreciate your national stance. Be assured that nobody suffers and copes with immense external pressures the way Jordan does, again on its own. So, sit with yourselves and reexamine reality... and believe me that you will be rewarded by Allah, by your people and by your country..."[29]

Retired Intelligence Officer: The Protests In Jordan Are A Conspiracy By Iran And The MB

In a March 30 article on the Amon News website, Omar Raddad, a retired intelligence officer, likewise stated that the protests in Jordan are orchestrated by the MB in collaboration with Iran, which has long been trying to undermine the Jordanian kingdom in various ways.[30] He wrote: "The escalation of the protests around the Israeli embassy in the capital Amman, ostensibly in solidarity with what is happening in Gaza as part of the war between Israel and Hamas, gives rise to several questions regarding the timing of this escalation, its aims and the elements behind it... It has already been proven that this new escalation was carefully planned and is the result of a plot that was concocted in Tehran in order to turn Amman into the fifth Arab capital controlled by Iran after Baghdad, Damascus, Sanaa and Beirut...

"The timing of this escalation is not unrelated to qualitative variables of the war between Israel and Hamas: the escalation of the barbaric murder and genocide committed by Israel, alongside the steady losses sustained by Hamas, which has largely lost its control [of the Gaza Strip] and whose power is waning now that many of its military and security commanders have been martyred... Most importantly, the timing of this escalation was approved in Tehran during the visit of Hamas [political bureau head] Isma'il Haniya there... This planned escalation by the 'Jordanian' public in Amman... is [also] not disconnected from the Iraqi Al-Hashd Al-Sha'abi, Iraq's [version of] the Revolutionary Guards [i.e., the IRGC], which is preparing for war [against Israel] on the Jordan-Iraq border and can easily reach the Golan or South Lebanon via Syria. Nor is it disconnected from the Iranian drones... that try to cross Jordan's northern border [on their way to Israel] ...

"The new escalation and Iran's role [in it] revive many pointed questions regarding the reasons for [the efforts to] incite the Jordanians and turn Jordan into the common thread of various speeches delivered by Hamas leaders from Doha, Beirut and the Gaza Strip...

"In the name of Gaza, the wounds of its children and the dismembered bodies of its women, the MB is now forming an alliance with Iran, in which Iran does not shed a single drop of blood... Is it a coincidence that the MB called its new escalation in Jordan 'the Jordanian flood'[?] And who is this flood aimed at? The [Israeli] occupation, or Jordan?"[31]

Jordanian Writer: Hamas' Incitement Is Meant To Spark Chaos In Jordan, Which Defended This Movement's Officials

In his March 31 column in the Al-Dustour daily, Tareq Abu Al-Ragheb, formerly the head of Jordan's Media Commission, likewise wrote that the incitement spread by the Hamas leadership is meant to spark chaos in Jordan. He called this ingratitude on the part of Hamas, hinting at Jordan's role in saving Khaled Mash'al's life after Israel tried to eliminate him in 1997: "Since the fuse of the Al-Aqsa Flood [war] was lit, not a single citizen of the proud [kingdom of] Jordan has made light [of this matter] or agreed to remain on the sidelines. All of them rushed to support their brethren in Gaza with all their might... But it saddens me that there are those who make an effort to undermine the stability of our nation... and even try to drag Jordan into a vortex of chaos and destruction, while pretending to forget that Jordan – its leadership, army, and people – will continue to be a firm rock against which their conspiracies will be shattered.

"The latest statements made by some Hamas leaders during their visits to Tehran can be interpreted only as covert calls to create chaos in Jordan... Incitement against the security apparatuses has become one of the despicable means used by certain people to undermine Jordan's stability. These people must know that, when provoked, every Jordanian becomes a security officer prepared to defend the stability of his homeland with all his might and all his courage. Jordan is not a country whose security can be easily undermined...

"The groups that exploit religion for political purposes [i.e. the MB] and use methods that have become hollow and obsolete, are doing their utmost to exploit the suffering in Gaza in order to win support and spark fitna [internal strife]. Surrounding the empty [Israeli] embassy is one example of these desperate attempts to influence public opinion, but the people of Jordan... will not allow [anyone to turn them into] a tool of these movements that deceive others. It is strange to see how those who are now calling to ignite fire in Jordan forget that, after Allah, Jordan was the one that saved them and defended them.[32] How can these people demand to undermine the stability of the country that sheltered and defended them in their darkest hour? That is nothing but ingratitude...

"Our wise and discerning leadership knows very well how to maintain the balance between helping [Gaza] and defending the homeland from the earthquake that some are trying to precipitate. I openly call on our Jordanian state to take a firm stance – without hesitation or leniency – against all those who allow themselves to spark fitna and chaos in our ranks... Undermining Jordan's security and stability has become a ploy openly used by those who do not appreciate the peace and security we enjoy and try to drag us into the quagmire of destruction that surrounds us in every direction... Jordan will continue, with all its might and determination, to be a fortified bastion [standing firm] against all the ambitions and plots... Curses and disgrace will continue to befall all those who try to undermine this stability or who think to harm our beloved country..."[33]


[2] Al-Quds Al-Arabi (London), March 31, 2024.

[3], March 30, 2024.

[4], March 30, 31, 2024; Al-Rai (Jordan), April 1, 2024.

[5] Among the slogans heard at these demonstrations are: "O Sinwar, put a bullet in the chamber [of your gun], we are your men!"; "This is what [Sheikh Ahmad] Yasin taught us: Carry the Quran along with the knife; this is what [Yahya] Ayyash taught us, carry the Quran along with the gun"; "The people want to liberate Palestine"; "The Al-Rabia [area] wants to be purged of the embassy and the ambassador"; "O Abu Obeida, you bold warrior!"; "Congratulations to the Izz Al-Din [Al-Qassam] Brigades"; "O our beloved Al-Qassam [Brigades], hit and bomb Tel Aviv.", March 26, 29, 30, April 1, 2024;, April 1, 2024.

[6], March 30, 2024.

[7], March 30, 2024; Al-Dustour (Jordan), March 31, 2024.

[8], March 31, 2024.

[10] See MEMRI Special Dispatch No. 10950, "Jordanian Foreign Minister Ayman Al-Safadi: Hamas Is An Idea And Ideas Do Not Die," November 9, 2023.

[12] See MEMRI Inquiry & Analysis Series No. 1746 - Jordan Increasingly Concerned About Iran Amid Activity Of Iran-Backed Militias On Its Northern Border – February 20, 2024.

[13], April 1, 2024.

[14], April 2, 2024/

[15],, March 27, 2024.

[16], March 27, 2024.

[17], March 29, 2024.

[19], April 2, 2024.

[20], March 29, 2024.

[21], March 29, 2024.

[22], March 31, 2024;, April 4, 2024.

[23], March 30, 2024.

[24], April 4, 2024.

[25], April 2, 2024.

[26], April 3, 2024.

[27]  Al-Rai (Jordan), March 31, 2024.

[28] Taqiyya (lit: 'caution') is a Shi'ite term that means concealing one's Shi'ite faith from non-Shi'ites or from Shi'ites who have not been initiated into the secrets of the faith. In this case it is an indirect reference to Iran.

[29] Al-Rai (Jordan), April 3, 2024.

[30] On Jordan's fear of Iran, see MEMRI Inquiry & Analysis No. 1746 - Jordan Increasingly Concerned About Iran Amid Activity Of Iran-Backed Militias On Its Northern Border – February 20, 2024.

[31], March 30, 2024.

[32] The reference is apparently to the poisoning of Khaled Mash'al by the Israeli Mossad in 1997. The Jordanian establishment intervened and compelled Israel to provide the antidote that saved Mash'al's life

[33] Al-Dustour (Jordan), March 31, 2024.

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