Friday, April 27, 2012

Fragmented Protests Rise in Jordan

By Mona Alami

"AMMAN, Apr 27, 2012 (IPS) - On a warm Friday afternoon, police cars blocked the roads around the Al Husseini mosque, where hundreds of men were kneeling for the noon prayers. At the end of the service, the crowds rose and marched in a compact protest behind a car bearing a banner for the Islamic Action Front (IAF), the Jordanian branch of the Muslim Brotherhood.

"With our blood, our soul, we sacrifice ourselves for Jordan," chanted the crowd.

Such protests have become a weekly sight in the Hashemite Kingdom, but they have been relatively peaceful, contrary to uprisings in neighbouring countries.

"Protestors are slowly upping the ante, with slogans becoming more daring day by day," observed Mohamad Masri, a political scientist at the Centre for Strategic Studies at Jordan University.

In the streets of Amman, rumours abound of misspent public funds involving three corruption scandals – namely, allegations surrounding the state-owned National Resources Investment and Development Corporation (Mawared), the illegal licensing of a Dead Sea casino, and the Jordan Petroleum Refinery.

"Unfortunately the protests have failed to garner momentum: the opposition is fragmented, different groups have too many different grievances," remarked activist Tareq Zureikat. The pro-democracy movement is a mix of tribal Jordanians, leftists and IAF followers......"

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Tribal Jordanians? very loose term. Surely you would need to elaborate on this explanation.