Jordan king channels intelligence energies to ‘security threats’

The intelligence apparatus, according to a Royal Court statement, is to “to focus all energies in its areas of specialty, which are vital to national security and professional intelligence operations, and to dedicate all capabilities to ensure that it remains an example of professionalism in countering terrorism and security threats.”

Jordanian King Abdullah II defined the new framework for the work of the country’s General Intelligence Department by limiting its mission to intelligence not related to Jordan’s internal affairs, especially its economy, including the issue of money laundering.

In a letter addressed to the Director of the General Intelligence Department Major General Ahmad Husni, the Jordanian king stressed the importance of addressing the country’s challenges at this stage, especially in terms of “modernising and developing the apparatus in the field of external security.”

Political observers who follow Jordan’s domestic situation note that King Abdullah II has been working for a long time to reorganise the Jordanian state’s apparatus and institutions in line with his vision that departs from the past system, especially during the reign of his late father, King Hussein.

During the reign of King Hussein, balances were based on the existence of three institutions that played a major role in implementing the policy of the king, who remains the ultimate decision-maker on every matter. These institutions are the presidency of the government, the presidency of the royal court, and the general intelligence.

The observers noted that the intelligence director had been operating outside the political sphere for a long time. The most recent message that the King sent to Major General Husni confirmed the desire to restructure the institutions and agencies of the Jordanian state from a new perspective that would distance the intelligence apparatus from the internal affairs and make it an apparatus with a clear mission.

The intelligence apparatus, according to a Royal Court statement, is to “to focus all energies in its areas of specialty, which are vital to national security and professional intelligence operations, and to dedicate all capabilities to ensure that it remains an example of professionalism in countering terrorism and security threats.”

Now that Jordan has embarked on its second centennial with great confidence and high hopes; and after we have provided the means to empower our legally specialised institutions to deal with some of the above mentioned issues[…] and after we have built institutions that promote integrity and fight corruption; and after we have completed the development of constitutionally and legally mandated oversight institutions, such as the Audit Bureau, in addition to developing our judicial system; it is now time for these institutions to immediately step up to their constitutional and legal responsibilities,” the Jordanian king said in his letter to the director of the General Intelligence Department.

The letter stressed that the objectives consist of releasing “the General Intelligence Department from the great burden it had to carry. — by filling these gaps beyond its area of specialty, with much appreciation — out of its keenness to serve our dear country, and to now be fully dedicated to professional intelligence work in its modern, comprehensive form, directing all its energies and capacities to it, so that it may remain a model of efficient intelligence in countering terrorism and security threats to our nation.”

In his letter, the king added that the General Intelligence Department needs to “develop its tools and methods to provide the best, modern intelligence assessments to decision makers in the political, economic and security-related fields, away from the regulatory and oversight roles that the circumstances had at times imposed on the department in areas that lie within the specialty of others.”

The king urged the director of the General Intelligence Department to “to move forward, at a faster, steadier pace, in the process of developing and modernising the General Intelligence Department, so that it would remain a model of proficiency, capability and excellence, with its ability to keep up with the developments and demands of modern intelligence work.”

The king also noted that he remains “fully confident” that Husni “will spare no effort in achieving this goal and others, which I had directed you to achieve when you assumed your position nearly two years ago.”

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