Jordan welcomes Syrians, works for peace-ambassador to Italy | Editor's Choice | Ammon News

Jordan welcomes Syrians, works for peace-ambassador to Italy

[4/26/2018 12:41:48 PM]

AMMONNEWS - Jordan "has taken in over 1.3 million Syrians since the start of the war" and has risen to the challenge "adequately thanks to help from our partners and international organisations", Jordanian ambassador to Italy Fayiz Khouri said at an ANSA Forum on Thursday. "However the situation remains extremely complex because the resources we receive cover less than 50% of our needs to support the refugees present on our territory," he added. The international community has mobilised, but the aid "is largely insufficient".

Khouri also lamented the paralysis in the Middle East peace process, "in which Jordan has an active role".

"We signed a peace agreement with Israel in 1994. However, since then we have seen little progress," he said. Amman's position is that of the Arab Peace Initiative led by Saudi Arabia, which foresees "an independent Palestinian State with East Jerusalem as the capital and clear borders". Without a clear and definitive framework there can be "no stability or development or security" for anyone. However, despite the deadlock Jordan "remains positive", Khouri said. In a region devastated by war and characterised by major instability the country remains relatively calm. This is because Jordan is "a moderate country, whose monarchy has managed to give it a balanced position on the international chess board". Though without resources of note, "we have managed to invest heavily in education, health, security and national cohesion", the ambassador said.

The national economy is supported by tourism, "which has always represented approximately 12-15 per cent of GDP. Now we are at 10-11 per cent. And we would like to return to previous levels." Arrivals from Italy have shown a strong increase in the first four months of the year, he added. Khouri reported excellent relations with Italy, "our second trade partner in the EU after Germany". "Our aim is to increase our exports, particularly in the agrifood sector, but also our cultural exchange," the ambassador concluded.


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