Thursday, November 8, 2007

Emirate of Transjordan
This article is about the 20th century state. For the area that was known as Transjordan during the Crusades, please see Oultrejourdain
"East Bank" redirects here. For other uses of the term, see East Bank (disambiguation).
Flag of Transjordan
The Emirate of Transjordan was an autonomous political division of the Mandate for Palestine, created as an administrative entity in April 1921 before the Mandate came into effect in September 1923. It was geographically equivalent to 1942–1965 Kingdom of Jordan (slightly different from today's borders), and remained under the nominal auspices of the League of Nations and British supreme rule, until its independence in 1946.
Initially, both the territory to the East and the West of the Jordan river were within the British Mandate for Palestine. "Transjordan" was a name coined as a reference to the part of Palestine "across the Jordan", i.e., on the far (eastern) side of the Jordan River. On the western side of the Jordan River was the remaining 21% of the Palestine Mandate, which contained many places of historical and religious significance to Judaism, Christianity, and Islam.
Under the Ottoman empire, Transjordan did not correspond precisely to a political division, though most of it belonged to the Vilayet of Syria and a small southern section came from the Vilayet of Hejaz. The inhabitants of northern Jordan had traditionally associated with Syria, those of southern Jordan with the Arabian Peninsula, and those of western Jordan with the administrative districts west of the Jordan River. However, the creation of the Hejaz railway by the Ottoman Empire had started to reshape the associations within the territory. Historically the territory had formed part of various empires; among these are the Jewish, Assyrian, Achaemenid, Macedonian (Seleucid), Nabataean, Ptolemaic, Roman, Byzantine, Sassanid, Muslim, Crusader, and Ottoman empire.
The Mandate for Palestine, while specifying actions in support of Jewish immigration and political status, stated that in the territory to the east of the Jordan River, Britain could 'postpone or withhold' those articles of the Mandate concerning a Jewish National Home. In September 1922, the British government presented a memorandum to the League of Nations stating that Transjordan would be excluded from all the provisions dealing with Jewish settlement, and this memorandum was approved by the League on 11 September. From that point onwards, Britain administered the part west of the Jordan as Palestine, and the part east of the Jordan as Transjordan. Technically they remained one mandate but most official documents referred to them as if they were two separate mandates. Transjordan remained under British control until 1946.
The borders and territory of Transjordan were not determined until after the Mandate came into effect. The borders in the east of the country were designed so as to aid the British in building an oil pipeline from their Mandate of Iraq through Transjordan to seaports in the Palestine Mandate.
The Hashemite Emir Abdullah, elder son of Britain's wartime Arab ally Sharif Hussein of Mecca, was placed on the throne of Transjordan. Britain recognized Transjordan as a state on May 15, 1923, and gradually relinquished control, limiting its oversight to financial, military and foreign policy matters. This had an impact on the goals of Zionism, as it effectively severed Transjordan from Palestine and so reduced the area of a future Jewish state in the region. [1] In March 1946, under the Treaty of London, Transjordan became a kingdom and on May 25, 1946, the parliament of Transjordan proclaimed the emir king, and formally changed the name of the country from the Emirate of Transjordan to the Hashemite Kingdom of Transjordan. After capturing the 'West Bank' area of Cisjordan during the 1948–49 war with Israel, Abdullah took the title King of Jordan, and he officially changed the country's name to the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan in April 1949. The following year he annexed the West Bank. With the exception of the French Cisjordanie, the coinage, Cisjordan, meant to apply specifically to the West Bank at that time, has not since caught on, outside Jordanian circles.

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