With a dispute over Israeli occupation of acres of Palestinian land still unsettled, Tel Aviv takes a step to purchase dozens of properties in Jordan to further expand its territory.
The Israel Land Fund, which promotes Jewish construction and has bought land and dozens of houses in occupied Palestinian territory in the West Bank, is planning to bring Jews from European countries to purchase dozens of properties once owned by Jews in neighboring Jordan.
“There are thousands of Jewish properties in Jordan which were purchased during the Ottoman era and under the British mandate. We have records of the ownership”, chairman of the extreme-right Jewish organization Arieh King told AFP.
“We are trying to bring Jews from European countries to purchase property which we locate in Jordan,” King said,
Up until 1995, selling land in Jordan to Israelis or anyone acting on their behalf was illegal and punishable by death. The new ruling which replaced the previous statute still bars Israelis from buying, or leasing, Jordanian land.
“[I]t is impermissible for foreign persons or corporate entities that do not hold an Arab nationality to purchase, lease, or own directly or indirectly any immovable property in the kingdom” according to the Law on Economic Boycott and Banning Dealing with the Enemy (Article 6) without an exception approved by high level political authorization.
King, however, said the organization would coordinate attempts to buy historically “Jewish-owned” land.
The move is expected to cause tensions between Tel Aviv and Amman, which is one of the only two Arab states having diplomatic ties with Israel. Egypt is the other Arab country recognizing Israel.
Earlier in 1967, the Israel Land Fund purchased the occupied territory in the West Bank which had been earlier seized from Jordan.
The disputed territory has been the cause of a long-running conflict between Palestinians and Israelis.
While Palestinians have long been fighting to win back their territory for “a future state”, far-right Jews are determined to keep the land in hopes of achieving what they describe as a “Greater Israel.”