Although kingdom slammed recognition of Jerusalem as capital of Israel, as a key ally it will still receive $1.275 billion a year until 2022, an annual increase of $275 million

By AP
US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, speaks in Cairo, Egypt, February 13,2018. (Khaled Elfiqi/AP)

US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, speaks in Cairo, Egypt, February 13,2018. (Khaled Elfiqi/AP)

AMMAN, Jordan — Despite repeated threats to punish countries that don’t agree with US policy in the Middle East, the Trump administration is set to boost aid to Jordan by more than $1 billion over the next five years.

US President Donald Trump has vowed to cut aid to nations that oppose the US, yet rhetoric appears to have hit reality with Jordan, a critical American partner in the volatile Middle East that has opposed the administration’s Mideast approach.

Nonetheless, US officials say the administration has decided to give Jordan $1.275 billion annually until 2022. That’s $275 million more per year than the current level.

US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and Jordan’s foreign minister will sign the aid agreement in Amman on Wednesday, according to officials, who were not authorized to preview the announcement and spoke on condition of anonymity.

The expected announcement appears to represent a victory of sorts for Tillerson and US Defense Secretary Jim Mattis, both of whom have been lobbying the administration to continue such assistance on national security grounds. But Trump and his US ambassador to the United Nations, Nikki Haley, have been pressing for aid cuts.

Jordan, a longtime partner of the US and one of only two Arab nations to have full diplomatic relations with Israel, is especially critical as an American ally, given its large Palestinian population along with the influx of hundreds of thousands of refugees from Syria.

Powered by WPeMatico