Clashes rage in Jordan despite price hike freeze

Clashes rage in Jordan despite price hike freeze

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Jordan demonstrations against rise in Taxes

The Gaza Post|The News of Palestine-Amman

Police in the Jordanian capital Amman have clashed with protesters as calls are growing for resignation of the government amid public anger over price hikes.

Jordanian Al-Bawaba news website said, “Road closures, burning tires, chanting anti-government slogans, calling on the government to step down and parking cars in the middle of main veins in Amman and several governorates were recorded, with reports of police intervention to bring the snowballing situation under control.”

Thousands of people staged protests in the capital and other cities in the cash-strapped country, demanding the “fall of the government.”

“Riots and protests were reported in almost every corner of the country according to local coverage and social media posts, including the official news agency (Petra),” Al-Bawaba added.

The unrest saw no signs of abating even after King Abdullah II on Friday ordered the government to freeze new price hikes on fuel and electricity in the wake of protests.

The government had announced a fuel prices rise of up to 5.5 percent and a 19 percent hike in electricity prices. The price of fuel has risen on five occasions since the beginning of the year.

The government says the price hikes were prompted by rising crude prices, adding that it also laid out plans for a new income tax.

The premier and union leaders are expected to meet at the Parliament to hold talks on the law.

Jordan has a public debt of some 35 billion dollars, equivalent to 90 percent of its gross domestic product.

Over 18 percent of the population is unemployed, while 20 percent are on the brink of poverty.

Amman secured a three-year credit line from the international monetary fund to support its economic reforms in 2016, but was told to raise taxes to meet conditions for future loans.

Source:Press TV

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