Protests Resume In Jordan Despite Resignation of PM

Anti-government protests resumed in Jordan Tuesday despite the resignation of the country’s prime minister who had pushed for austerity measures.

Several thousand Jordanians marched toward the office of outgoing Prime Minister Hani Mulki overnight and into Tuesday morning demanding the government halt price hikes and planned tax increases that critics say mostly target the poor and the middle class.

Mulki submitted his resignation to King Abdullah on Monday.

Riot police scuffled with protesters late Saturday and fired several tear gas volleys to keep them away from the prime minister’s office. Protesters chanted, The people want to topple the government.”

Earlier Saturday, the king met with Mulki, cabinet ministers and senior security officials. The state news agency Petra quoted the king as saying Jordan’s citizens should not have to bear the burden of financial reforms alone.

King Abdullah is the ultimate decision-maker, but public anger is typically directed at governments appointed by him.

International lenders have pushed for economic reforms to help reduce Jordan’s public debt, a result of a sluggish economy linked to regional turmoil.

Source: Voice of America