Jordan is a semi-arid country, covering an area of 89,342 km2 (34,495 sq mi), with a population of 10 million, making it the eleventh-most populous Arab country. The dominant majority, or around 95% of the country's population, is Sunni Muslim, with an indigenous Christian minority. Jordan has been repeatedly referred to as an "oasis of stability" in the turbulent region of the Middle East. It has been mostly unscathed by the violence that swept the region following the Arab Spring in 2010. From as early as 1948, Jordan has accepted refugees from multiple neighbouring countries in conflict. An estimated 2.1 million Palestinian and 1.4 million Syrian refugees are present in Jordan as of a 2015 census. The kingdom is also a refuge to thousands of Iraqi Christians fleeing persecution by ISIL. While Jordan continues to accept refugees, the recent large influx from Syria placed substantial strain on national resources and infrastructure.
Jordan ranks high in the Human Development Index, and has an upper middle income economy. The Jordanian economy, one of the smallest economies in the region, is attractive to foreign investors based upon a skilled workforce. The country is a major tourist destination, also attracting medical tourism due to its well developed health sector. Nonetheless, a lack of natural resources, large flow of refugees and regional turmoil have hampered economic growth. (Full article...)
Shabab Al-Ordon Club (Arabic: نادي شباب الأردن, lit. 'Jordan Youth Club') is a Jordanian professional football club based in Amman, that competes in the Jordanian Pro League. The club was established in 2002 and is considered as the newest club in Jordan, but originated from its club Al-Qadisiyah. Besides it being one of the most competitive football teams in Jordan and succeeding in several achievements in a very short period of time, as they occupied fourth in Jordanian League in 2004-2005 Winning the league in 2005-2006 and also winning the Jordan FA Cup at the same year. (Full article...)
Ali Abu Nuwar (surname also spelled Abu Nuwwar, Abu Nawar or Abu Nowar; 1925 – 15 August 1991) was a Jordanian army officer, serving as chief of staff in May 1956 – April 1957. He participated in the 1948 Arab–Israeli War as an artillery officer in the Jordanian army's predecessor, the Arab Legion, but his vocal opposition to British influence in Jordan led to his virtual exile to Paris as military attaché in 1952. There, he forged close ties with Jordanian crown prince Hussein, who promoted Abu Nuwar after his accession to the throne.
Abu Nuwar's enmity with Glubb Pasha, the Arab Legion's powerful British chief of staff, his insistence on establishing Arab command over the army and his influence with Hussein led the latter to dismiss Glubb Pasha and appoint Abu Nuwar in his place. However, Abu Nuwar's ardent support for the pan-Arabist policies of Egyptian president Gamal Abdel Nasser contributed to Jordan's increasing isolation from the UK and the US, which were major sources of foreign aid to Jordan. At the same time, existing dissatisfaction with Abu Nuwar's leadership by palace officials and veteran Bedouin army units culminated into violent confrontations at the large army barracks in Zarqa between royalist and Arab nationalist units. Two principal accounts emerged regarding the events at Zarqa, with the royalist version holding that the incident was an abortive coup by Abu Nuwar against Hussein, and the dissident version asserting that it was a staged, American-backed counter-coup by Hussein against the pan-Arabist movement in Jordan. In any case, Abu Nuwar resigned and was allowed to leave Jordan for Syria. He was subsequently sentenced to 15 years in absentia. (Full article...)
A pre-1920 photograph of the train station in Ma'an. The Hejaz Railway is still operational today.
Ma'an (Arabic: مَعان, romanized: Maʿān) is a city in southern Jordan, 218 kilometres (135 mi) southwest of the capital Amman. It serves as the capital of the Ma'an Governorate. Its population is approximately 41,055 in 2015. Civilizations with the name of Ma'an have existed at least since the Nabatean period—the modern city is just northwest of the ancient town. The city is an important transport hub situated on the ancient King's Highway and also on the modern Desert Highway. (Full article...)