Jordanians protest against slow pace of reforms

By REUTERS
March 18, 2011 18:02

 
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AMMAN- More than a thousand Jordanian activists staged street protests on Friday urging King Abdullah to accelerate the tempo of promised political reforms, saying procrastination would only fuel growing dissent.

The pro-democracy protesters who marched in downtown Amman, mainly supporters of the mainstream Islamist Muslim Brotherhood and leftist allies, said they would continue weeks of street protests inspired by uprisings elsewhere in the Arab world, until their demands are met.

"This is a continuation of the movement to demand reforms and to accelerate it, especially since the steps taken so far are worrying and do not inspire confidence," said Jamil Abu Bakr, a leading figure in the Muslim Brotherhood, told Reuters.

While the US ally has faced nothing like the mass uprisings that toppled veteran authoritarian leaders in Egypt and Tunisia, dissent has built up and the opposition has become more vocal in its slogans and calls for change.

"We want to reform the regime," chanted the crowd, urging the monarch to introduce constitutional changes that curb his executive powers and to provide fair representation under a new electoral law.

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