Three and a half years ago, in April of 2015, Canada handed more than $250 million in military and humanitarian aid to Jordan.
A report released last week reveals that, since the Canadian soldiers left the country, the king of Jordan has acquired more than a hundred luxury homes and apartment buildings.
The Foreign Policy report reveals the king owns at least 120 luxury homes that were never intended to be used as residences. Some apartments are worth tens of millions of dollars.
The homes are located across the kingdom, and many of them are not easily accessible by public transportation. One apartment, in the resort city of Aqaba, alone is said to be worth about $14 million. The development is on the site of the late King Hussein’s palaces, and has since been rebuilt by a consortium led by the king.
Some of the apartments are worth more than $2 million.
“The main and most expensive islands of King Abdullah II’s network of luxury waterfront properties are located along the Red Sea coast, and include the capital Amman and coastal areas in the southern part of the country,” writes FP writer Paul McGeough.
The king has reported on the individual islands of his property on his official website, frequently calling his real estate holdings an “investment portfolio.” The structures he’s designed with are, according to his web site, primarily residential. Some, however, seem to have housed offices or have been on non-residential buildings until recently. He also has a villa on the island of Jerash, next to the one he originally built.
“The Greek shipping magnate Demetrios Alexisos Mogulsis may be king Abdullah’s ultimate patron and possible heir, but he represents a different strain of elitism in the closely-knit kingdom,” writes FP, referencing investments Mogulsis and his family made in antiquities. “Religion, that traditional haven for conspicuous consumption and decadence, has also provided the crown prince with a world of luxury accessorized with relics and spectacular ecclesiastical settings.”
Canada’s ambassador to Jordan at the time of the military transfer told The Canadian Press at the time that he expects the aid money “will help us to be able to build the capacity of the security and military sector and support sustainable partnerships, particularly for us in the area of security with Jordan, and we hope that we will use those funds to help solve some of the social issues that still exist here in Jordan, and, really, just in Jordan as a whole.”