Ex-top Jordan official, jailed in plot against king, hospitalized amid hunger strike
A former top Jordanian official imprisoned in an alleged plot against the Western-allied monarchy was rushed to the hospital over the weekend after a three-week hunger strike, the man’s American lawyer said Monday.
Bassem Awadallah, who is a dual Jordanian-American citizen, was suffering from low blood pressure and sugar levels when he was hospitalized Saturday, his representatives said.
They said he was given glucose intravenously but refused further intervention once his condition stabilized. He has since returned to prison and remains on his hunger strike.
“My client’s life remains in danger as his health declines daily,” said Michael J. Sullivan, Awadallah’s attorney.
He said Awadallah’s family has urged the U.S. government to “take immediate action” to secure his release and holds Jordan’s King Abdullah II responsible for the harm to Awadallah.
A Jordanian security official called the claims of a hunger strike “inaccurate,” saying Awadallah has been drinking liquids regularly.
“He was hospitalized at the recommendation of the medical team and later discharged after receiving the necessary treatment,” the official said, speaking on condition of anonymity under security guidelines. “He is now in good condition.”
The official said there was no obligation for Jordanian officials to notify the American Embassy because Awadallah is a Jordanian “first and foremost.” But he said that Awadallah is entitled to meet with a US consular representative, who visited him on Monday.
The US Embassy in Jordan had no immediate comment.