Jordan parliament approves new prime minster and cabinet

Eleven lawmakers vote against the cabinet, while one legislator abstains and another absent.

jordan 88 (photo credit: )
jordan 88
(photo credit: )
Jordan's new Prime Minister Nader al-Dahabi and his 28 ministers on Sunday received 97 votes of support from the 110-member parliament during a vote of confidence session. Eleven lawmakers voted against the cabinet, while one legislator abstained and another was absent. Al-Dahabi and his team of technocrats - including a record four women ministers - easily won parliament's approval as the body is dominated by loyalists to the king. Dissenters included six Islamic Action Front deputies. The IAF, the political arm of the Muslim Brotherhood Movement and once the country's largest opposition, suffered a blow in the Nov. 20 parliamentary elections, losing nearly two-thirds of its legislative presence. The IAF's setback was believed related in part to its inability to improve economic conditions in Jordan as well as the government's crackdown on the group in the wake of Hamas's rising power in the Gaza Strip and chaos in Iraq and Lebanon. Last week, al-Dahabi presented to parliament his policy guidelines and vowed to improve cash-strapped Jordan's economy, which is saddled by multibillion dollar foreign debt and soaring unemployment, poverty and inflation. Al-Dahabi, 61, a technocrat who previously ran a special economic zone in the Red Sea resort city of Aqaba, is expected to embrace the king's economic reform plan and nurture close ties with the United States.