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Saudi Arabia Table of Contents

Saudi Arabia

Relations with Jordan

The final country with which Saudi Arabia shared a land border was Jordan, in the extreme northwest. Although the Hashimite dynasty that ruled Jordan also had ruled the Hijaz before being driven out by Abd al Aziz in 1924, past rivalries were buried after World War II, and relations between the two monarchies were relatively cordial, especially between 1955 and 1990. After the 1958 overthrow of the Hashimite dynasty in Iraq, the Saudis assumed a protective attitude toward Jordan. Riyadh provided economic assistance for development projects, and, following the June 1967 War, direct financial subventions for the budget. Saudi Arabia also mediated between Jordan and its various Arab adversaries, including the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) in 1970-71 and Syria in 1980.

Jordan's refusal to support Saudi Arabia during its confrontation with Iraq in 1990 shocked and angered Riyadh. Many Saudis viewed Jordan's action as that of stabbing a friend in the back. The Saudi government reacted severely: all grants to Jordan were terminated; low-priced oil sales were cut off; and Jordanian imports were restricted. After Iraq had been defeated, Riyadh spurned Jordan's initiatives to reconcile differences. In 1992 relations between the two former friends remained deeply strained.

Data as of December 1992