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Royal Hashemite Court (Jordan)

King meets leaders, members of US Congress
Washington, DC, 24 April 2013

His Majesty King Abdullah on Wednesday held a series of meetings with US Congress committees on current developments in the Middle East and Jordanian-US ties.

King Abdullah met with House of Representatives Speaker John Boehner and discussed the latest developments in Syria, as well as ways to revive the peace process between the Palestinians and Israelis. Talks also tackled bilateral relations and ways to enhance them in various fields.

His Majesty underlined the importance of a political solution to the escalating Syrian crisis that stops the bloodshed, ends the violence and puts an end to the ongoing influx of refugees to neighbouring countries, including Jordan.

The King said Jordan has received more than half a million refugees since the start of the crisis, which is posing extra burdens on the Kingdom’s already strained resources. He asked the international community to support relief efforts and enable Jordan to provide services to the refugees, whose numbers are increasing day by day.

The King underscored the US’ key role in supporting peace efforts and help the Palestinians and Israelis return back to the negotiating table to establish an independent Palestinian state, according to the two-state solution, which is the only way to achieve peace, security and stability for the peoples of the region.

His Majesty spoke about the ongoing democratisation in the Kingdom, including the January parliamentary elections and consultations with the Lower House of Parliament to name the prime minister and begin the experience of parliamentary governments.

The meeting touched on the distinguished ties between the two countries and the role of the House of Representatives in cementing these ties and increasing cooperation in various fields.

Boehner praised His Majesty's leadership and support for peacemaking efforts. Jordan was a key state in the region, he said, the US House of Representatives will work to further enhance the strategic relations with Jordan.

The King also met with the chair of the House Appropriations Committee, Kay Granger, and members of the committee and discussed bilateral relations and ways to enhance them, especially in the economy.

His Majesty spoke about the economic challenges facing the Kingdom, and the high energy bill, which led to a significant increase in the budget deficit. He also highlighted the repercussions of the Syrian crisis on the Kingdom's economy. Jordan, he said, was working to meet these challenges by pressing ahead with economic reform.

The meeting also touched upon the latest developments in the Middle East, especially the situation in Syria, and the importance of reaching a comprehensive and peaceful solution that ends the bloodshed, stops the cycle of violence and guarantees the unity of Syria and its people.

His Majesty said the international community needed to stand by the Kingdom to enable it to continue to provide relief services for Syrian refugees. He also explained the burden borne by Jordan due to the continued influx of refugees and the resulting pressure on the country's infrastructure and limited resources.

Addressing peace efforts, the King said “the alternative to achieving peace in the Middle East is increasing violence and extremism.”

Head and members of the committee hailed His Majesty’s reform efforts  and noted that international observers said the recent parliamentary elections were fair and transparent.

The meetings were attended by Royal Court Chief Fayez Tarawneh, Foreign Minister Nasser Judeh, His Majesty’s Office Director Imad Fakhoury, and Jordan’s Ambassador to the US Alia Buran.