A Jordanian television host called to “trample underfoot” the country’s peace treaty with Israel and “gouge out the eyes” of Israelis on Tuesday following the return to Jordanian hands of two small border areas farmed by Israel under the two nations’ 1994 peace agreement.
The treaty had created special arrangements for Israeli farmers and their employees to work lands in Naharayim and the southern Tzofar enclave on the northern end of the countries’ shared border for 25 years.
That period ended last weekend, and Amman, in keeping with an announcement it made last year, took back possession of the small strips of land, known in Arabic as Baqoura and Ghumar.
In a Tuesday comment on Jordan Today TV, host Rana Hmouz celebrated the Jordanian decision, and then called for the cancellation of the peace treaty itself, followed by the destruction of Israel.
“Baqoura and Ghumar are Jordanian territory [once again]. This decision was bound to fill our hearts with joy instead of blood,” she said in the broadcast, which was translated by the MEMRI research institute.
“But our joy is not complete. We have more demands,” she goes on. “We want to see a similar decision that will let us trample the peace accord underfoot. We want to see a similar decision that will let us trample the gas and water agreements underfoot. We want to see a similar decision that will let us trample the entire Zionist entity underfoot. We don’t want their representatives defiling our land.”
She adds: “After Baqoura, we want to gouge out the eyes of the Zionists and their [Arab] supporters. After Ghumar, we want [our hearts] to overflow with joy when we annul the peace agreement in support of the blood of our martyrs and the Arab identity of Palestine.”
The television station is not new to controversy. As reported by MEMRI, Hmouz and station owner Mohammad Ajlouni were briefly arrested in May over a defamation complaint filed by the head of the country’s Gendarmerie security service, Hussein Hawatmeh.
The reclamation of the enclaves by Jordan were seen by Israel this week as a sign of the fragility of the peace agreement.
In a speech Sunday in Amman, King Abdullah II announced his country’s “full sovereignty over every inch” of the area. He received a standing ovation.
Jordanian television also aired video of the Jordanian flag being raised over Naharayim.
The site itself was long a symbol of Israeli-Arab rapprochement.
It was the site of a deadly March 1997 attack in which a group of Israeli schoolgirls from Beit Shemesh were gunned down by a Jordanian soldier, killing seven.
Following the killings, the late king Hussein, Abdullah’s father, made a trip to each of the victims’ homes in Israel to express his personal sorrow and his nation’s grief.
At a conference in Israel on Monday marking 25 years to the peace treaty, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu lamented that the peace achieved with Jordan and Egypt remained an instrumental one, and did not reflect real reconciliation.
The treaties were all based on Israeli military power and deterrence, Netanyahu said.
“There wasn’t a real reconciliation,” he said of Jordan.
Asked why relations remained frosty, the prime minister said it was due to the absence of progress in the Israeli-Palestinian peace process.