King Appoints Tarawneh as Prime Minister, following Khasawneh resignation

[29-04-2012 12:00 AM]

Ammon News - AMMONNEWS - King Abdullah II on Thursday delegated Dr. Fayez Tarawneh to form a new government, shortly after former Prime Minister Awn Khasawneh submitted his resignation while he is on an official trip abroad to Turkey.

King Abdullah on Thursday afternoon accepted Khasawneh's resignation, following a resignation letter relayed to the Royal Court through Minister of Justice Ibrahim Jazi.

Prime Minister-elect Tarawneh had previously headed the government from 1998 to 1999 under the reign of the late King Hussein. King Abdullah II ascended the throne on February 7, 1999 during Tarawneh's term following the death of King Hussein.

Born in 1949, Tarawneh previously served as Jordan's Ambassador to Washington, previous Minister of Foreign Affairs, and was Chief of the Royal Hashemite Court.

Tarawneh received a Ph.D. degree in Economics from the University of Southern California.

Former Prime Minister Awn Khasawneh was appointed by King Abdullah on October 24, 2011, after the resignation of ex-PM Marouf Bakhit's government following popular street pro-reform protests, which also led to the resignation of ex-PM Samir Rifai's government earlier in 2011.

Meanwhile, ex-PM Khasawneh met with Turkish President Abdullah Gul on Thursday afternoon for 40 minutes as part of his official trip to the country, Ammon News correspondent Wael Jaraysheh reported from Ankara.

Turkish officials denied in statements to Ammon News knowledge of Khasawneh's resignation upon his meeting with Gul.

Observers noted that Khasawneh's resignation is unprecedented, as no Jordanian Prime Minister has submitted his resignation from abroad before, particularly on an official trip. Informed sources close to ex-PM Khasawneh told Ammon News that the resignation may have come in protest of the royal decree issued Thursday extending the Parliament's ordinary session, after Khasawneh had recommended to the Royal Court adjourning the ordinary session.

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