Riots spread across Jordan over ‘vote-rigging’

 Riots have spread across Jordan after the announcement of parliamentary election results which people in four provinces dispute.
Violent clashes erupted on Thursday between police and protestors who accuse Jordan’s Independent Electoral Commission of vote-rigging, DPA reported.

Police fired tear gas to disperse the protestors who set fire to government buildings. At least three people were arrested.

The clashes were reported in the southern city of Maan where four schools were stormed, and government buildings and banks were set ablaze.

Karak and Madaba, two cities also located in southern Jordan, also saw unrest as people accused the electoral commission of “fraud.”

In the northern provinces of Irbid and Balqa, angry protestors burned tires to block roads while calling for the overthrow of Jordan’s kingdom.

Jordan’s main opposition, the Muslim Brotherhood, has been challenging the outcome of the elections, saying the vote will not end public anger.

The Muslim Brotherhood, which had boycotted the general elections along with other pro-reform groups, said on Thursday that measures taken by King Abdulla II fell far short of true democratic change and that the monarch should not have any say at all in naming a prime minister.

Preliminary figures show that more than 56 percent of registered voters cast their ballots.

Jordanians have been holding demonstrations since January 2011, demanding political reforms, including the election of the prime minister by popular vote and an end to corruption.

In October 2012, the Jordanian king dissolved the parliament and called for early elections under growing public pressure. He has also sacked three prime ministers since the start of the popular protests in the country in a bid to appease protesters.


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