Riyadh, Asharq Al-Awsat- Jordanian Interior Minister Mohammad Raoud has stated that his country will not close its borders with Syria and will not take unusual steps in the issue of Syrians refugees fleeing from the troubled areas.
Raoud told Asharq Al-Awsat that his country is dealing with the presence of 95,000 Syrians in its territories on the basis of Arab “hospitality” but added: “The Syrians living in Jordanian cities are a burden on us economically, educationally, and medically but we have no choice other than to be their host.”
The Jordanian interior minister visited Saudi Arabia few days ago and signed a cooperation agreement for the transfer of jailed persons from both countries. He asserted that Jordanian-Saudi relations have become a model to be followed in Arab relations and underlined the brotherly relations between King Abdullah II and Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah Bin Abdulaziz and their certain desire to activate the constant consultation and cooperation in the various current situations and latest developments in the region. He pointed out that the two countries’ signing of the agreement to transfer jailed persons achieves humanitarian objectives that enable prisoners from both countries to serve their remaining sentences in their country while enabling their relatives to visit and see them without the burden of traveling.
Regarding the Saudi-Jordanian antinarcotics fight, the Jordanian interior minister said the two countries always open with each other lines of communications at the highest levels for controlling the borders and minimizing the percentage of smuggling “and we sometimes reach the executive measures and exchange roles because we consider the security issue between us as one.” He added: “We implement daily very precise security measures with the Saudi authorities to hunt down the smugglers and foil their plans. I can assert in this context that the rate of smuggling drugs between the two countries is very small.”
As to the internal political action, Jordanian Minister Mohammad Raoud said Amman views the youths’ steps aimed at reaching freedoms as “legitimate” but stressed that these moves remain within the peaceful framework “and we know about everything the youths want and are in accord with their demands. We took the initiative of creating changes that achieve the aspirations and guarantee freedoms for all while protecting Jordan’s stability.”