AMMAN, Jordan, Feb. 15 (UPI) -- Jordanian tribal leaders have accused Queen Rania of corruption, stealing land from the people and money from the Treasury to "promote her public image."
A recently published letter written by 36 tribal leaders who comprise 40 percent of the kingdom's population compared Queen Rania, 40, to Leila Ben Ali, wife of deposed Tunisian President Zine el-Abidine Ben Ali, who reportedly stole money from that country's treasury and gave vast sums and land to family members at the expense of Tunisia's citizens, Ynetnews.com reported Tuesday.
The leaders called on Jordanian King Abdullah to return land given to his wife's family saying it "belongs to the Jordanian people," the Web site said. They also accused the queen of "building centers intended to strengthen her status and serve her interests."
The leaders warned the king and his family will suffer the same fate as the Egyptian and Tunisian leaders if he fails to act and implement the necessary reforms and move toward a democratic regime, the Israeli news Web site said.
"Sooner or later Jordan will be a destination for a similar uprising like the ones in Tunisia and Egypt because of oppression of freedom and robbing from public funds," the letter said.
A Jordanian citizen and member of one of the country's largest tribes said while they are still loyal to the Hashemite Kingdom, "we believe that King Abdullah has to stop his wife and her family from taking advantage of their power, otherwise the crown might be in danger," the Web site quoted the unnamed citizen saying.
In an effort to quell anti-government demonstrations in recent weeks, King Abdullah appointed a new government and promised to work towards implementing political and economic reforms.