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Massive Food Protest held in Jordan

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Food price protests sweeping across North Africa and the Middle East reached Jordan on Friday.

Thousands of Jordanians have taken to the streets of the country to protest the government’s inability to control the rising price of commodities.

Chanting anti-government slogans, demonstrators in the capital Amman and other cities denounced the government economic policies on Friday, saying Prime Minister Samir Rifai policies have caused the rising food and fuel prices, unemployment and poverty.

“We are protesting the policies of the government, high prices and repeated taxation that made the Jordanian people revolt,” a protester said.

“Jordan is not only for the rich. Bread is a red line. Beware of our starvation and fury,” read one of the banners carried by the protesters.

“Prices, particularly gasoline and food, are getting out of hand,” Buthaina Iftial, a 24-year-old civil servant, said, adding that “We’re becoming poorer every.”

Police and plainclothes officers formed rings around t demonstrators to contain the protests. There were no reports of violence or arrests.

Earlier this week, following riots in Algeria and Tunisia, Jordan announced a USD 225 million package of cuts in the prices of some types of fuel and of staple products including sugar and rice on the orders of King Abdullah I to help ease the burden on the poor.

Protesters, however, say such measures are too little, too late. Major trade unions have planned a sit-in outside the parliament on Sunday to “denounce government economic policies.”


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