The top diplomat says Amman’s priority is ending “Israeli barbarism in Gaza,” which can no longer be seen as self-defense.
Jordan said it would not sign a deal to supply Israel with energy in exchange for water – a deal that was due to be ratified last month.
“We held a regional dialogue on regional projects. I think that’s all… war [has] proven, [it] will not continue,” Jordanian Foreign Minister Ayman Safadi told Al Jazeera on Thursday, referring to the Israel-Hamas conflict.
“We will not sign this agreement anymore. Can you imagine a Jordanian minister sitting next to an Israeli minister and signing an agreement on water and electricity, all while Israel continues to kill children in Gaza?” – asked the top diplomat of Jordan, which borders Israel to the east.
Jordan and Israel have maintained a fragile peace agreement since 1994 that returned about 380 km (236 miles) of occupied Jordanian lands from Israeli control and resolved long-standing water disputes.
“We [Jordan] signed a peace agreement in 1994 as part of a broader Arab effort to find a two-state solution. This was not achieved. Instead, Israel did not honor its end of the agreement. So the peace agreement will have to remain postponed for now, collecting dust,” he said.
All of Jordan’s efforts were focused on ending what Safadi described as “retaliatory barbarism by Israel” in Gaza.
“Israel’s aggression and crimes [in Gaza] can no longer be justified as self-defense. It kills innocent civilians and attacks hospitals,” he told Al Jazeera.
“If any other country did even a fraction of what Israel is doing now, they would be subjected to sanctions from all corners of the globe,” he added.
This month, Jordan announced it was “immediately” recalling its ambassador to Israel in response to the war in Gaza, accusing Israel of causing an “unprecedented humanitarian disaster.”
Safadi said Jordan would never enter into a dialogue on who rules Gaza after the war, given that such a move could now be seen as a green light for Israel to do whatever it wants.
“If the international community wants to talk about this, it must end the war now,” he added.
Jordan, like other Arab and Muslim countries, strongly condemned the Israeli bombing of Gaza, which killed more than 11,600 people, including more than 4,700 children. Israel also launched a ground offensive and restricted supplies of water, food and electricity to the enclave.
Safadi was speaking as the head of the United Nations Relief and Works for Palestine Refugees Agency (UNRWA), Philippe Lazzarini, warned of a “deliberate attempt to suppress” its operations in the Gaza Strip and said it risked halting all its humanitarian activities due to a lack of fuel .
Israel cut off fuel supplies to the Gaza Strip as part of a “total siege” of the area after Gaza-based Hamas militants launched an attack on southern Israel on October 7, killing around 1,200 people, according to Israeli authorities.