Ammon News, Jordan News

King departs for working visit to U.S.

[2/19/2019 9:10:53 AM]

AMMONNEWS - His Majesty King Abdullah II on Tuesday, left for a working visit to the United States, during which he will participate in the "Aqaba Meetings," to follow up on and coordinate international efforts in the war on terrorism. After his US visit, His Majesty will head to London on an official visit to attend the London Initiative Conference hosted by the UK in support of Jordanian economy. During the visit, the King will meet with British officials and parliamentarians, as well as top political and economic figures. His Royal Highness Prince Ali Bin Al Hussein was sworn in as Regent in the presence of Cabinet members.

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MPs reject the amendment to the Cybercrime Law

[2/19/2019 4:47:30 AM]

AMMONNEWS - The Lower House of Parliament rejected the Cybercrime draft law in a session held Tuesday, chaired by its Speaker Atef Tarawneh. Last December, the government withdrew the bill from the Lower House's Legal Committee to amend the definition of hate speech as well as review article 11, which was not available for amendment under the previous draft law. Hate speech, as defined by the government, means: "every writing and every speech or action intended to provoke sectarian or racial strife, or to incite conflict between sects and various elements of the nation." The amendments, which will be referred to the Senate, also included the amending of Article (11) which stipulates an imprisonment of no less than three months and no more than two years on anyone who intentionally disseminates or retransmits data or information that defames, insults or denigrates any person on the internet or websites or any system of information. The penalty also include a fine between JD100 and JD2,000. The bill was drafted due to the misuse of some communications platforms including social media and smartphone applications, the need to criminalize certain non-criminal acts under the implemented law, and to increase penalties on certain forms of criminal offenses in the law due to the increase in the number of cyber crimes committed.

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Rise in temps forecast, but cold conditions remain

[2/19/2019 4:44:05 AM]

AMMONNEWS - A slight rise in temperatures is expected on Tuesday but the weather will stay cold and partly cloudy with a chance for scattered showers in the northern and central regions, the Jordan Meteorological Department (JMD) said in its daily brief. Winds will be northeasterly moderate, picking up at times, the JMD added. Daytime temperatures expected for today in Amman and the northern cities will hover around 12 degrees Celsius, and 11 in the southern cities, dropping down to 5 and 4 respectively. The weather will be warmer in the port city of Aqaba with highs reaching 23 degrees Celsius and lows standing at 13 degrees at night. Another rise in temperatures is expected on Wednesday with clouds at low altitudes, daytime showers and northwesterly moderate winds. Cold weather is expected to continue on Thursday across many parts of the country, while it will be pleasant in Aqaba and the Jordan Valley, with a weak possibility for rainfall in different regions, the JMD added.

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King meets former PMs

[2/18/2019 4:35:34 PM]

AMMONNEWS - His Majesty King Abdullah met on Monday with former prime ministers at Al Husseiniya Palace and discussed a number of domestic issues and regional developments. Former prime ministers Zeid Rifai, Ahmad Obeidat, Taher Masri, Abdul Salam Majali, Abdel Karim Kabariti, Fayez Tarawneh, Abdur-Rau'f Rawabdeh, Ali Abu Al Ragheb, Adnan Badran, Marouf Bakhit, Samir Rifai, Awn Khasawneh, and Abdullah Ensour attended the meeting. King Abdullah affirmed that political reform is not merely a slogan, stressing that there is a genuine will to develop political life in the Kingdom and pointing to his vision on this as outlined in the Royal Discussion Papers. His Majesty said developing political life requires the cooperation of all, especially the political elite, noting that the goal of his recent meetings with parliamentary blocs and civil society institutions is to encourage them to present proposals and identify political, economic, and social priorities for the coming years. The King stressed that everyone is a partner in achieving progress in the nation’s interest, and all have the responsibility to deal with the current conditions and challenges facing Jordan, affirming the important role of former prime ministers in this regard. Turning to economic conditions, His Majesty noted the importance of moving forward in economic reform for Jordan to become self-reliant. The King highlighted the upcoming London Initiative Conference, slated for 28 February, as an important step to support Jordan’s economy and to affirm that the Kingdom is on the right economic track. His Majesty affirmed that there is zero tolerance for corruption, underscoring that abuse of public office is unacceptable regardless of the level of the employee. Commenting on regional conditions, the King reiterated Jordan’s steadfast position on the Palestinian cause despite pressure, stressing the Kingdom’s full support for the Palestinians as they seek their legitimate rights to an independent state on their national soil with East Jerusalem as its capital. The meeting also covered developments in Syria, with His Majesty noting the need to reach a political solution to the crisis that safeguards Syria’s territorial integrity and the unity of its people while ensuring the safe return of refugees. Moreover, the discussion touched on the King’s recent visits to Iraq, Turkey, and Tunisia, which were aimed at bolstering cooperation with these countries, especially at the economic level. Speaking at the meeting, the former prime ministers stressed the importance of debating various issues inclusively to come up with solutions to political, economic, and social challenges. They called for supporting small- and medium-sized enterprises to reduce poverty and unemployment. Discussions also covered the importance of maintaining the state’s authority and symbolism. The former prime ministers commended His Majesty’s regional and international efforts to safeguard Jordan’s higher strategic interests while seeking security and stability in the region. Royal Hashemite Court Chief Yousef Issawi and Adviser to His Majesty and Director of the Office of His Majesty Manar Dabbas attended the meeting.

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Jordan condemns Al Aqsa Mosque closure, attacks on worshippers

[2/18/2019 9:00:06 AM]

AMMONNEWS - The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Expatriates Monday condemned "in the strongest possible terms" the closure by Israeli police of the Al-Aqsa Mosque/ Haram Al Sharif gates in occupied Jerusalem and assaults on worshipers. The ministry's official spokesman, Sufian al-Qudah, demanded that Israel, as the occupying power, act in accordance with international law and immediately reopen the gates, respect the sanctity of the holy place, not hamper the entry of worshipers, withdraw security forces at the holy compound and respect the feelings of Muslims. He said the Israeli measures constitute a flagrant violation of the historical and legal status quo and Israel's obligations under the international law and the international humanitarian law, as the occupying power, and held it fully responsible for the safety of the mosque. Al Qudah explained that the Foreign Ministry is "following up on this dangerous development through various channels to secure the reopening of the gates and the restoration of calm to the Haram al-Sharif". The spokesman said that the ministry had lodged a protest with the Israeli Foreign Ministry, in which it voiced the government's condemnation of the provocative Israeli actions against Al-Haram Al-Sharif, and demanded their immediate cessation.

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House Speaker urges Iran to release Jordanian detainees

[2/18/2019 8:44:34 AM]

AMMONNEWS - Lower House Speaker Atef Tarawneh on Monday received Iranian Ambassador Mojtaba Ferdowsi at the end of his tenure, for a discussion of bilateral ties and the issue of Jordanian detainees in Iran. Tarawneh stressed the importance of cooperation between Islamic parliaments to support pan-Islamic issues, foremost of which is the Palestinian cause, adding that Jordan will continue pushing for a just and comprehensive peace that ensures the historical and legitimate rights of the Palestinians, based on the two-state solution, and achieves regional peace and security. Jordan, which adopts moderate policies, has gained the trust and respect of the international community, as the Kingdom advocates for dialogue and political solutions to solve various crises, including the conflict in Syria, towards which Jordan has called for a political solution that guarantees peace and security in the country and its unity and territorial integrity, Tarawneh added. On Iraq, Tarawneh said that during his recent visit to Baghdad he felt optimism for a bright future for the country, pointing out that "all parties in the Iraqi parliament are unanimous that sectarianism would not build nations, and had come together to further the country's interests". The meeting also touched on the issue of three Jordanians held in Iran after crossing into Iranian waters by mistake, and Tarawneh asked Iranian authorities for their release. The Iranian envoy said that the issue of the detainees "will be solved in a matter of days", assuring that they were treated well. He also said that Tehran recognizes Jordan's moderate positions and supports the Hashemite custodianship over Islamic and Christian holy sites in Jerusalem. He emphasized the importance of coordination among Islamic parliaments in support of Islamic causes.

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Unstable weather conditions forecast with snowfall in southern highlands

[2/18/2019 8:38:04 AM]

AMMONNEWS - The Kingdom will be affected by unstable weather conditions on Monday, creating cold and partly cloudy weather with rainfall in various parts of the Kingdom that may turn heavy at times accompanied by thunder and hail, the Jordan Meteorological Department (JMD) said. Snowfall is expected in early morning hours in the southern highlands with frost formation later at night in the hilly areas and the Badia regions, while winds will be northwesterly moderate to brisk at times, the JMD added. Temperatures will rise again over the next two days, but it will remain cold in many regions, while it will be fair in the Dead Sea and Aqaba with clouds at various altitudes and a chance for light showers in the northern western parts of the country, the department noted. Daytime temperatures expected for today will hover around 11 degrees Celsius in Amman, the northern and southern cities, dropping down to 4, 5 and Zero degrees respectively. The weather will be warmer in the port city of Aqaba with highs reaching 22 degrees Celsius and lows standing at 13, the JMD added further.

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