The United Kingdom is to supply equipment to the Jordanian Armed Forces to help them counter Islamic State.
A £2.5m package of equipment including transport vehicles, body armour, communications and IT equipment will be gifted by the Ministry of Defence.
According to a written statement by Michael Fallon, Secretary of State for Defence:
“I have today laid before the House a Departmental Minute describing a package of equipment, with a total value of £2,407,450 which the UK intends to gift to the Jordanian Armed Forces.
Conventional Jordanian forces lack the agility, as well as the training, equipment and command structures, to allow them to counter emergent threats on their Syrian and Iraqi borders. The new Quick Reaction Force (QRF), a British-led multinational initiative is designed to address this by being able to deploy approximately 500 personnel at speed, to counter the ISIL and extremist threat at Jordan’s borders.
This gift will greatly enhance the QRF’s capacity and comprises a range of non-lethal command and control, manoeuvre and protective equipment.
Gifting is expected to begin soon after the completion of the Departmental Minute process.”
Through gifting equipment the government expect to assist in countering the threat from Islamic State. Penny Mordaunt, Minister of State for Armed Forces said:
“The spread of extremism and terrorism in the Middle East represents a threat to us all and Jordan is on the front line. I’ve seen first-hand how vital UK support is helping the Jordanian Armed Forces secure their borders from organisations such as ISIL.
We are committed to the security of the Middle East and will continue to look at ways we can bolster our allies to build a more secure future for the region.”
The Jordanian royal family has close ties to Britain – King Abdullah’s mother Princess Muna is British by birth and Queen Noor has a country house in Berkshire. Jordan has good relations with the British armed services, with regular visits and training events such as Exercise Pashtun Commando 2013. Jordan is playing a key role in the anti-Islamic State coalition.