Jordan’s Authorities Ban Anti-Israeli Rally
By Jihad Abu Falah
Albawaba.com - Amman
More than 1,000 protestors, who responded to a call by Jordan's professional associations and opposition parties Friday to protest peacefully under the banner "Hand in hand to purify Jordan from Zionist sacrilege", were banned from marching by the security forces.
The National Gathering of Professional Associations and Political Parties, the body organizing the activities, called Thursday for a march that was to set out from the associations’ headquarters in Shmeissani, Amman, to head for the prime minister’s office to demand the closure of the Israeli embassy in Amman.
Organizers talked with the security authorities to persuade them to permit the march, but the officials insisted the march was unlicensed and could not go ahead.
In a statement to Albawaba.com, Head of the Professional Associations Council, Saleh Armouti, protested the ban, saying that “there is no single reason for the ban, since all the rallies organized by us were disciplined and witnessed no clashes with the police.”
For his part, Governor of Amman, Tal’at Nawayseh, denied as “incorrect” that the organizers had called the authorities to inform them of the march.
But Armouti said he personally called the minister of interior and the security services “who refused to give permission, but as far as we are concerned, staging the rally is our right and does not need permission.”
To calm down the angry protestors, former MP and leading Islamist Hamza Mansour asked the crowd not to leave the yard of the offices, and wait for decisions by the national gathering, which would “decide on ways to express our solidarity with the Palestinian people, stressing the right for peaceful demonstrations. “
Later, hundreds of people gathered for the midday Friday prayers in the parking lot outside the union’s headquarters and were later joined by hundreds more who wanted to march.
Policemen armed with clubs formed a cordon around the building and pushed back the protesters as they tried to march outside the compound.
On Thursday night, candle march walked through the streets of Baqaa Camp in Amman, and the city of Fuheis to the north to commemorate the 40th day of the death of the Palestinian 12-year-old Mohammad Durra, whose killing in cold blood shocked the world after a footage of the crime was broadcasted all over the world.
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