The Israeli-Palestinian negotiations, which resumed in Amman earlier this month, are mainly intended to help Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas and Jordan's King Abdullah bolster their stature among their constituents and the international community.

For King Abdullah, who is facing growing popular protests in the kingdom over lack of reforms and transparency, the meetings between Israeli and Palestinian officials in Amman are a way of distracting attention from his problems at home.

The king is hoping that by hosting Israeli and Palestinian negotiators, the world will see that it is business as usual inside the kingdom. The message that Abdullah is seeking to send is that he is not worried about or preoccupied with the ongoing protests that have been sweeping the kingdom over the past few months.

In this regard, Abdullah seems to have achieved his goal, at least for now. In the past two weeks, news about the renewed Israeli-Palestinian talks has eclipsed reports related to street protests and acts of violence in many places throughout the kingdom.

The "Arab Spring" has seen thousands of Jordanians take to the streets on a weekly basis to demand major reforms and an end to financial corruption.

In response, Abdullah in the hope of appeasing the public, has ordered a crackdown on top government officials suspected of embezzling public funds

But all the measures that the king has so far taken have failed to convince many Jordanians, some of whom are now beginning to talk about the need for regime change in the kingdom: some Jordanians are openly talking about ending the rule of the Hashemite royal family.

Abdullah is also hoping that the Israeli-Palestinian talks in Jordan will help him improve his standing in the US and the West, where he is also facing pressure to implement far-reaching reforms before unrest gets out of hand in Jordan. Abdullah, who is expected to visit the US next week for talks with President Barack Obama, is now hoping that the Americans will reward him for succeeding in bringing the Palestinians back to the negotiating table with Israel.

Abbas, for his part, is hoping that the talks in Jordan will ease US and EU pressure on him to resume the peace process. He agreed to send his representatives to the Amman talks in the hope that the international pressure would be shifted from the Palestinians to Israel. Abbas is also hoping that the Amman talks will persuade the US and EU to continue, or increase, financial support for his authority. He knows that money will consolidate his power and ensure the continued support of tens of thousands of Palestinian families who are on his payroll.

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