Free Headline Alerts     
Worldwide Web


Monday, January 24, 2011     INTELLIGENCE BRIEFING

Jordan boosts military salaries as internal unrest, economic woes worsen

AMMAN — Jordan, amid rising unrest, has increased the salaries of military and security forces.


The government said it would raise the salaries of all civil servants as well as military personnel by 20 Jordanian dinar, or $28.40. Prime Minister Samir Rifai said this was meant to offset the increase in the cost of living.

"The rising prices of food and fuel is not a Jordanian government decision," Rifai said. "It's the result of a global increase in prices."

Secret Gum Disease & Bad Breath Cure, 100% Guaranteed!

Also In This Edition

In an address to parliament on Jan. 20, Rifai sought to assuage rising anger among Jordanians amid deteriorating economic conditions, Middle East Newsline reported. Violent protests have taken place in several parts of the Hashemite kingdom in early 2011, sparked by calls for employment and a decrease in the price of food staples and fuel.

"The problem we face is cumulative and caused by an unprecedented deficit," Rifai said.

Jordan has been struggling with a record budget deficit of $2.1 billion. The government, under pressure from the World Bank, had intended to reduce the deficit by 30 percent this year.

Instead, the government has assured Jordanians that it would increase subsidies under a $425 million program. Officials said the subsidies would maintain the price of animal feed, rice, sugar, cooking gas and electricity.

But the renewed subsidies have not quelled rising protests in the Arab kingdom. The Islamic opposition has rejected the measures and on Jan. 21 held a so-called "Day of Rage" in Amman and Irbid.

Many of the 5,000 protesters called for the resignation of Rifai and the election of the next prime minister. Others accused the Rifai government of massive corruption.

"We call for early elections under a new and democratic elections law that secure fair representation of all citizens," Hamza Mansour, secretary-general of the opposition Islamic Action Front, said.

About Us     l    Privacy     l     l
Copyright © 2011    East West Services, Inc.    All rights reserved.