Jordan’s security services cracked down on a demonstration in Amman on Friday against the deal to import natural gas from Israel, Anadolu has reported. Altogether, 15 protesters were arrested, including four women.
The demonstration took place in front of the headquarters of the Ministerial Council in the Jordanian capital, where security services were deployed to prevent both the arrival and gathering of protesters. All of those arrested were later released.
According to Anadolu, the slogans against the gas deal described it as “shameful”, and called Israel “the enemy”. Jordan has a peace treaty with its neighbouring state.
Friday’s protest was part of a series of nationwide demonstrations which have been held since the deal was first mooted. Many Jordanians complain that it puts their country’s energy sector under the control of Israel, and regard the purchase of gas as a form of normalisation with the occupying state.
Jordan signed the deal in September, through which an American company will export natural gas from the Israeli Leviathan field under the Mediterranean. Official Jordanian sources said that the agreement is for Jordan’s National Electric Power Company to receive about 45 billion cubic metres of natural gas over a 15-year period at a cost of $10 billion.