Jordan's King Fires Cabinet Amid Protests

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Jordan's King Abdullah II fired his government on Tuesday amid protests in the streets in Amman.

The protests were inspired by recent turmoil in Egypt and Tunisia.

Jordanians called for the resignation of the Prime Minister Samir Rifai. They blamed him for rising food and fuel prices and for slowing down political reforms.

Abdullah quickly named Marouf al-Bakhit as his prime minister-designate. He asked al-Bakhit for "comprehensive assessment...to correct the mistakes of the past." He did not elaborate. The statement said Abdullah also demanded an "immediate revision" of laws governing politics and public freedoms.

Al-Bakhit previously served as Jordan's premier from 2005-2007.

Abdullah also stressed that economic reform was a "necessity to provide a better life for our people, but we won't be able to attain that without real political reforms, which must increase popular participation in the decision-making."

The cabinet also resigned and it was not clear when al-Bakhit will name the new cabinet.

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