Jordan is a small country with an area of 89,287 square kilometers and approximately 5 million inhabitants. It is situated in the very heart of the Arab World with only one outlet to the sea at the port of Aqaba, located at the northernmost tip of the Red Sea.
Jordan has common borders with Saudi Arabia, Iraq, Syria, Palestine, and Israel. Due to its geographic position, Jordan has played an important roll as a stabilizing political factor in The Middle East.
Jordan's modern history dates from 1921, when Emir Abdullah, the second son of Sherif Hussein, established the Emirate of Trans-Jordan as a self-governing territory under British mandate. In May 1946, Emir Abdullah was proclaimed King of the independent Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan. The formal union of Jordan and the West Bank was declared in 1950.
In 1953, King Hussein Ibn Talal, Emir Abdullah's grandson, formally ascended the throne of Jordan. His reign continued until 7th February 1999, when he finally succumbed to cancer at the age of 63. The late King Hussein will be remembered for many achievements, but he will perhaps be remembered most of all as the "King of Peace" due to his efforts in establishing and maintaining peace in the Middle East.
Shortly before King Hussein's death, he relieved his own brother and Crown Prince for more than 34 years Prince Hassan from his duties and appointed his eldest son Prince Abdullah as Crown Prince. On 6th February 1999, Crown Prince Abdullah ibn Al-Hussein was sworn in as Regent, and was proclaimed and sworn in as King of Jordan on the 7th of February 1999. King Abdullah II appointed his younger brother Prince Hamza as his Crown Prince.
Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, a young country dense with the history, a well-traveled bridge between sea and desert, East and West. Above the layers of antiquity lies a land of mesmerizing beauty and contrast: the Jordan Valley, fertile, ever-changing, and remote desert canyons, immense and still. Here are splendid castles and hunting lodges, the haunting wilderness of Wadi Rum, Red Sea reefs and restful spas. Here, too, are monuments form every age of humanity, crowned by the rock-carved city of Petra, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.