- Human Rights
- October 21, 2010
- 2 minutes read
HRW Calls on Jordanian Government to Protect Political Freedoms
A rally organized by the youth office of the Popular Unity Party was not met with lightly following a decision by Jordan’s Muslim Brotherhood offshoot, the Islamic Action Front, to pull out of the elections in protest to governorate boundaries set for the November 9 parliamentary poll.
The Party argues that the set boundaries over represented rural areas described as loyal to the government were at the expense of urban areas regarded as Islamist strongholds. During the past few weeks party members have been detained as authorities attempt to clampdown on the protestors.
New York based Human Rights Watch (HRW) condemned the arrests and called on the regime to respect the right to free expression. According to the MB political arm’s leaders, 35 people were detained for three hours before being released, with the authorities saying they had not obtained a permit for the gathering.
Christoph Wilcke, senior Middle East researcher at HRW, argued the government should persuade Jordanians to participate in the elections with the strength of its arguments, rather than bully its censors.