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Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Major riots in Jordan over fuel prices

From AP:
Jordan’s prime minister announced price hikes for gas and other fuel Tuesday, setting off demonstrations and calls for general strikes.

Protesters blamed Jordan’s problems on King Abdullah II, who has the final say in all civic matters. They also demanded the resignation of the prime minister, a top aide of the king.

Prime Minister Abdullah Ensour’s announcement on state TV cited a need to offset $5 billion in state losses from a rising fuel bill.

The news sparked protests in the capital, Amman, and at least 12 other cities across Jordan.

“Revolution, revolution, it is a popular revolution,” chanted about 2,000 protesters in an impromptu demonstration at a main Amman square, housing the Interior Ministry and other vital government departments.

The protesters — affiliated with Muslim, Arab nationalist, Marxist, Communist and youth opposition groups — also targeted Abdullah in a rare public display against the monarch. Criticizing the king in public is forbidden in Jordan and is punishable by up to three years in jail.
Ammon News has the rundown:
* Protests erupt in various governorates throughout kingdom against government decision to lift subsidies on oil derivatives

** Two policemen critically injured in town of Taibeh, Irbid, after unknown assailant fired gunshots during protest

*** Gendarmerie forces use tear gas and rubber bullets to disperse rioters in Karak, Dhiban, and Salt

*** Protesters set gas station ablaze in Irbid

*** Protesters torch court building in Karak, Loot Civil Consumer Association market

*** Rioters set 3 police vehicles on fire in Tafileh, torch 6 govt vehicles in Salt

*** Looting of Central Market in Ma'an, Major Desert Highway blockaded
Wouldn't it be great if a friendly neighbor of Jordan's would offer to help out with its fuel crisis to head off these violent protests that threaten the regime?

Oh, right.