Abdullah II of Jordan

Abdullah II
King Abdullah portrait.jpg
Abdullah in 2008
King of Jordan
Reign 7 February 1999 – present
Coronation 9 June 1999
Predecessor Hussein
Heir apparent Crown Prince Hussein
Prime Ministers
Born (1962-01-30) 30 January 1962 (age 55)
Amman, Jordan
Spouse Rania Al-Yassin (m. 1993)
Issue
Detail
Crown Prince Hussein
Princess Iman
Princess Salma
Prince Hashem
Full name
Abdullah bin Hussein bin Talal bin Abdullah
House Hashemite
Father Hussein of Jordan
Mother Muna Al-Hussein
Religion Sunni Islam
Signature Abdullah II's signature

Abdullah II bin Al-Hussein ( Arabic: عبد الله الثاني بن الحسين‎, ʿAbdullāh aṯ-ṯānī ibn Al-Ḥusayn, born 30 January 1962) has been King of Jordan since the 1999 death of his father, King Hussein. According to Abdullah, he is a 41st-generation direct descendant of Muhammad as he belongs to the Hashemite family—who have ruled Jordan since 1921.

He was born in Amman as the first child of King Hussein and his second wife, British-born Princess Muna. Shortly after his birth, Abdullah was named the crown prince. King Hussein transferred the title to his brother, Prince Hassan, in 1965 and unexpectedly returned it to Abdullah in early 1999 just a few weeks before his death. Abdullah began his schooling in Amman, continuing his education abroad. He assumed command of Jordan's Special Forces in 1994, and became a major general in 1998. In 1993 Abdullah married Rania Al-Yassin (of Palestinian descent), and they have four children: Crown Prince Hussein, Princess Iman, Princess Salma and Prince Hashem. The ruler of Dubai, Sheikh Mohammed Al-Maktoum, is his brother-in-law by marriage—to Abdullah's half-sister, Princess Haya.

Abdullah, a constitutional monarch, embarked on neoliberal economic policies when he assumed the throne, and his reforms led to an economic boom which continued until 2008. During the following years Jordan's economy experienced hardship as it dealt with the effects of the Great Recession and spillover from the Arab Spring, including a cut in its petroleum supply and the collapse of trade with neighboring countries. In 2011, large-scale protests demanding reform erupted in the Arab world. Many of the protests led to civil wars in other countries, but Abdullah responded quickly to domestic unrest by replacing the government and introducing reforms. Proportional representation was reintroduced to the Jordanian parliament in the 2016 general election, a move which he said would eventually lead to establishing parliamentary governments. Although some local opposition groups called his reforms inadequate, other observers praised them. They took place amid unprecedented regional instability: an influx of 1.4 million Syrian refugees into the natural resources-lacking country and the emergence of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL).

Abdullah is popular locally and internationally for maintaining Jordanian stability, and is known for promoting interfaith dialogue and an understanding of Islam. The third-longest-serving Arab leader, he is regarded by the Royal Islamic Strategic Studies Center as the most influential Muslim in the world. [1] Abdullah is custodian of the Muslim and Christian sacred sites in Jerusalem, a position held by his dynasty since 1924. [2]

Early life

Abdullah and his father, hugging on a couch
Abdullah (age six) and his father, King Hussein, on 7 August 1968

Abdullah was born on 30 January 1962 in Amman, to King Hussein during Hussein's marriage to his British-born second wife, Princess Muna Al-Hussein. [3] He is the namesake of his great-grandfather, Abdullah I, who founded modern Jordan. [4] Abdullah says that he is the 41st direct descendant of Muhammad through his daughter Fatimah, whose husband was Ali, the fourth caliph. [5] The Hashemites ruled Mecca for over 700 years—until its 1925 conquest by the House of Saud—and has ruled Jordan since 1921. [6] The Hashemites, the oldest ruling dynasty in the Muslim world, are the second-oldest-ruling dynasty in the world (after the Imperial House of Japan). [1]

Since Hussein had a daughter from his first marriage, Abdullah (as his eldest son) became heir apparent to the Jordanian throne under the 1952 constitution. [3] Due to political instability—including a number of assassination attempts—King Hussein appointed his brother Prince Hassan as his heir apparent in 1965; he returned the appointment to Abdullah shortly before his death in 1999. [7] Three more children followed Abdullah from Hussein's marriage to Princess Muna, two from the king's third marriage and four from his fourth. [8] Abdullah has four brothers and six sisters— Princess Alia, Prince Faisal, Princess Aisha, Princess Zein, Princess Haya, Prince Ali, Prince Hamza, Prince Hashem, Princess Iman, Princess Raiyah—seven of whom are half-siblings. [8]

He began his schooling in 1966 at the Islamic Educational College in Amman, and continued at St Edmund's School in England. Abdullah attended high school at Eaglebrook School and Deerfield Academy in the United States. [4]

Other Languages
azərbaycanca: II Abdullah
беларуская: Абдала II
čeština: Abdalláh II.
Ελληνικά: Αμπντάλα Β΄
français: Abdallah II
한국어: 압둘라 2세
Հայերեն: Աբդալլահ II
hrvatski: Abdulah II.
Bahasa Indonesia: Abdullah II dari Yordania
ქართული: აბდულა II
қазақша: Абдалла II
Napulitano: Abd Allah II
norsk nynorsk: Abdullah II av Jordan
oʻzbekcha/ўзбекча: Abdulloh II
Runa Simi: Abdullah II
Simple English: Abdullah II of Jordan
slovenščina: Abdulah II. Jordanski
Taqbaylit: Ɛebdellah II
Türkçe: II. Abdullah
українська: Абдалла II
Tiếng Việt: Abdullah II của Jordan