King Abdullah II announced Sunday that Jordan has notified Israel it wants to reclaim two small plots of territory leased under their 1994 peace deal.
“We have informed Israel (that we are putting) an end to the application of the peace treaty annexes regarding Baqura and Ghumar,” said the king, quoted by official news agency Petra.
But Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said he wanted to open negotiations to keep the current arrangement in place.
The land was leased to Israel for a 25-year renewable period under annexes of the 1994 peace treaty that lay down a one-year notice period, with Jordan retaining sovereignty.
“Israel was informed today of the Jordanian decision,” the monarch said, stressing that “Baqura and Ghumar are Jordanian land and will remain Jordanian”.
“Baqura and Ghumar have always been at the top of our priorities, and we have decided to put an end to the application of the peace treaty annexes regarding Baqura and Ghumar,” he added.
Netanyahu confirmed Sunday that he had been informed of Jordan’s request.
“As part of the agreement between our two countries, Jordan kept the right to take back the two areas at the end of the 25-year period,” the premier said.
“We will open negotiations on the possibility of prolonging the existing agreement,” he added, as Israel marked the anniversary on the Jewish calendar of former prime minister Yitzhak Rabin’s assassination.
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