Members of the Jordanian Royal Family marked Jordan’s 74th Independence Day on Monday as the country continues to battle COVID-19.
Alterations had to be made to the celebrations due to restrictions because of the global pandemic meaning the festivities were subdued. King Abdullah addressed the nation from Raghadan Palace in Amman and an official welcome ceremony was held for his and Queen Rania’s arrival. Their son, Crown Prince Hussein welcomed them to the palace alongside the Royal Hashemite Court Chief Yousef Issawi and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Major General Yousef Huneiti.
Queen Rania tweeted ahead of the celebrations, “The ‘way’ we celebrate Independence Day may change, but the ‘why’ remains constant; it’s the love we hold for our country and the commitment of its people to keep it safe and strong. God bless Jordan, its people and its leadership!”
King Abdullah praised Jordanians resilience throughout the COVID-19 pandemic and in the past as they fought for their independence.
His Majesty said: “You are our independence, as were our ancestors who built the state, and the Nashama of the armed forces and security agencies, the protectors of the homeland and its independence.”
He also mentioned how Independence Day coincided this year with Eid and how the celebrations were kept to a minimum as many families could not visit their loved ones and mark the important Muslim holiday together.
He called on Jordanians to make 2020’s Eid and Independence Day one to remember stating that it should be “one we tell our children and grandchildren, the story of a nation where their mothers and fathers stood firm to protect their life and their future.”
He continued: “Our battle with coronavirus disease is but one of those tough tests that have shown the efficiency of the state, its enduring institutions, and the strength of its army and security forces.”
King Abdullah later praised the leaders in Jordan for their quick response to the virus and said: “God blessed us with a clarity of vision and wisdom in decision-making when we took pre-emptive measures to counter this pandemic.” He stressed that “all must rise to the responsibility” while citing Jordanians dedication to their homeland.
“Yes, we have been physically distant, but our hearts and goals have grown closer so that we can succeed,” he continued.
Lastly, His Majesty remarked: “I wish you good health and wellbeing, as you move forward to achieve your aspirations. God willing, may Jordan continue to celebrate these occasions with His blessings.”
A full English translation of his speech can be read here.