History of Jordan
The land that became Jordan is part of a region that is rich in history, and considered to be the cradle of civilization. Evidence of human communities in Jordan dates back to around 17,000 BC. While there is no architectural evidence from this period, archaeologists have found tools, such as hand-axes, knives and scraping equipments.
At around 2000 B.C., Semitic Amorites settled around the Jordan River in the area called Canaan. This region was invaded and over the centuries by many kingdoms, particularly Egyptians, Israelites, Assyrians, Babylonians, Persians, Greeks, Romans, Arab Muslims, Christian Crusaders, , Ottoman Turks, and, finally, the British.
With the break-up of the Ottoman Empire at the end of World War I, the League of Nations created the British Mandate Palestine. The area east of the Jordan River was known as Transjordan.
In 1946, after World War II, Jordan had full-autonomy from Britain, and the Jordanian Parliament proclaimed King Abdullah I as the first ruler of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan. King Abdullah I remained leader of the country until his assassination in 1951.
In 1950, Jordan annexed the West Bank, which was only recognized by Great Britain. In 1965 Saudi Arabia exchanged a small piece of sea-shore near Aqaba with Jordan giving a large area of inland desert.
Jordan participated in the June 1967 Six-Day War against Israel along with Egypt, Syria and Iraq. During the war, Jordan lost the West Bank and East Jerusalem to Israel. There was a dramatic increase of Palestinian refugees following that war, which were estimated to 300,000. That number does not consider the amount of refugees that came in the country before the war.
A peace treaty was signed between Jordan and Israel in 1994. Jordan has since remained at peace with all of its neighbours.
Since the Iraq War in 2003, between 700,000 and 1.7 million Iraqis fled their country and settled in Jordan, mainly in Amman.
- Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (www.wikipedia.org).
- BBC News - Country Profile: Jordan (news.bbc.co.uk).
- Jordan facts on National Geographic (www3.nationalgeographic.com).
- World Flag Database (www.flags.net).