Jordan blasts 'discriminatory' Muezzin Law

Jordan claims Muezzin Law is contrary to the peace deal between the two countries.

Arutz Sheva Staff ,

Mosque (illustration)
Mosque (illustration)

Jordan on Wednesday condemned the “Muezzin Law”, which passed a preliminary reading in the Knesset.

Jordan’s Information Minister Mohamed Momani said the bill is "discriminatory" and contrary to "Israeli commitments under the peace accord" that the Jewish state signed with Jordan in 1994.

Jordan is the official custodian of the Muslim holy sites in eastern Jerusalem, under an agreement reached between the countries following Jerusalem’s liberation by Israel during the 1967 Six Day War.

The “Muezzin Law” was recently brought back to the Knesset after changes to it were agreed upon.

The original bill stalled when the haredi parties in the coalition, fearing that it could be used to silence the Shabbat sirens which announce the beginning of the Sabbath each Friday, joined with the Arab parties in opposing the bill.

The new version of the law would only affect calls to prayer issued at night, removing any concern that the Shabbat sirens, which sound before sundown, would be affected.

According to the version of the law recently passed by the Ministerial Committee for Legislation, any house of prayer using outdoor loudspeakers between the hours of 11:00 p.m. and 7:00 a.m. would be liable to pay a fine of at least 5,000 shekels ($1,333).

Jordan has expressed its disapproval of the legislation in the past, saying that Israel has no authority to instruct mosques in Jerusalem what to do, particularly the Al-Aqsa Mosque which is under the authority of the Jordanian Waqf.

The Palestinian Authority (PA) has expressed its opposition as well, with PA chairman Mahmoud Abbas warning the bill “would drag the area to disaster.”