DUBAI—Jordan’s government accused a younger half-brother of the country’s reigning monarch of plotting to destabilize the kingdom, as a rift within the royal family threatened to upend politics in this critical U.S. Middle Eastern ally.
On Sunday, the country’s deputy prime minister and foreign minister, Ayman Safadi, accused Prince Hamzah bin Hussein of engaging in unspecified actions that allegedly put Jordan, which is struggling to control the spread of Covid-19 and repair a flagging economy, at risk.
“There were certain designs and plots aimed at undermining our security and stability,” Mr. Safadi said at a news conference in the Jordanian capital, Amman. “These designs and plots were dealt with with firmness.”
Prince Hamzah, a former crown prince with significant public support in Jordan, released video statements on Saturday denying wrongdoing and saying he had effectively been placed under house arrest. Prince Hamzah also said some of his supporters had been arrested.
The prince, who was removed from his spot as heir-apparent by King Abdullah II in 2004, criticized his half-brother’s government, saying the country had become “stymied in corruption, in nepotism and in misrule.”