Jordan will train Syrian rebels and tribesmen to fight the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS), a senior government official revealed on Monday.
Jordan’s information minister, Mohammad Al-Momani, told reporters in the Jordanian capital Amman that the decision is part of an international effort to combat the terrorist group.
Momani pointed out that the training venue and timing are not yet set.
The spokesman for the Jordanian government stressed that his country’s participation in training Syrian rebels will not change Jordan’s call for a political solution to the Syrian crisis, but refused to say whether or not this training comes in coordination with the Syrian regime.
Momani described the decision as a “sovereign decision in order [for Jordan] to deal with threats to its security”, calling on those he described as the “wise people in the Syrian regime” to “realise that Jordan took a decision that serves its national interest in dealing with the Syrian crisis.”
The Syrian regime often accuses Jordan of training armed opposition groups and facilitating their passage to Syria, a charge that Jordan has repeatedly denied.
Momani recalled the Jordanian role in training Iraqi tribal forces and Kurdish Peshmerga forces, and in supplying them with arms to combat ISIS.
Momani said that his country adopts a policy with three axes to combat terrorism; a military axis to eliminate terrorist organisations; a security axis that aims to immunise the country from terrorism and extremism; and finally an ideological axis that aims to spread tolerant rather than extremist Islam.