Jordanians are interpreting the visit of a US congressional delegation headed by Democrat Nancy Pelosi, speaker of the House of Representatives (the lower house of Congress), as a statement of support for the kingdom.
“Considering what’s happening in the region, this is a welcome visit that emboldens our country and our leadership,” Jordanian MP Wafa Bani Mustafa told Arab News.
Adnan Abu Odeh, a former adviser to King Abdullah and the late King Hussein, told Arab News: “I’m sure the delegation wants to go back to Washington and convey a sense of concern about the situation in Jordan and the region.”
Veteran Jordanian journalist Etaf Roudan told Arab News: “King Abdullah is looking to create warm alliances within Washington after the cold shoulder that (US President Donald) Trump has shown to Jordan following the disagreement over the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.”
Roudan said: “Pelosi’s visit comes as she gears up for a major political confrontation with Trump. Unlike Trump, American Democrats support the two-state solution.”
The nine-member bipartisan delegation included Adam Schiff, chairman of the Intelligence Committee, who is leading the impeachment probe into Trump; Eliot Engel, chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee; and Bennie Thompson, chairman of the Homeland Security Committee.
Mac Thornberry, a member of the House Armed Services Committee, was the only Republican in the delegation.
It was received in Jordan by the king, Crown Prince Hussein bin Abdullah, Foreign Minister Ayman Safadi, the king’s communications adviser Bisher Khasawneh, and his media adviser Kemal Al-Nasser.
During their meeting, the two sides discussed cooperation, the strategic partnership between the two countries, and regional developments, primarily the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, Jordan’s official Petra news agency reported.
The king stressed the need for a just, lasting and comprehensive peace based on the two-state solution, with East Jerusalem the capital of Palestine.
On Syria, the king called for a political solution that safeguards the country’s territorial integrity and its people’s unity, while guaranteeing the safe and voluntary return of refugees, Petra reported.
The US delegation commended Jordan’s efforts in pursuit of regional peace and stability.