Government type: Constitutional monarchy
Constitutional monarchy, system of government in which a monarch shares power with a constitutionallyorganized government. The monarch may be the de facto head of state or a purely ceremonial leader. The constitution allocates the rest of the government’s power to the legislature and judiciary.Political Ideologies: Islam Libertarianism
Islam is the constitutionally recognized state religion, but the Jordanian Constitution also safeguards “the free exercise of all forms of worship and religiousrites in accordance with the customs observed in the Kingdom.” Roughly 92 percent of the population is Sunni Muslim, 2 percent is Shiite or Druze, 6 percent is Arab Christian, including GreekOrthodox, Greek and Roman Catholics, Syrian Orthodox and Coptic Christians.
Jordan’s internal problems are more serious than threats from abroad. A majority Palestinianpopulation is restless and unhappy with Jordan’s close alliance with the United States. The Muslim Brotherhood is active in Jordan, but integrated in the political process. Terrorist acts have puncturedJordanian stability four times since 2002. An influx of 500,000 to 750,000 Iraqi refugees has been an economic advantage but also a burden on the state. In a January 2007 interview, King Abdullah saidJordan was “actually looking at nuclear power for peaceful and energy purposes. We’ve been discussing it with the West.”
Jordan was historically dominated by Arabssince the Islamic expansion of the 7th century. Jordan was under Ottoman rule until the early 20th century, when it was carved up into its present-day boundaries by the British mandate. Britain installedKing Abdullah in 1921. Jordan won its independence in 1945, and lost the West Bank in the 1967 Six Day War with Israel. Jordan signed a peace treaty with Israel in 1994 and has been an ally of the...