Tafileh Reform Activists to be Charged with Slander, Lese Majeste

[13-09-2012 12:00 AM]

Ammon News - AMMONEWS- Jordanian security forces on Saturday arrested nine Pro-reform activists who belong to the Free Tafileh Movement after tense protests that took place Friday in both the southern governorate of Tafileh, and the Tafileh neighborhood in eastern Amman.

The protests turned violent after pro-reform activists reportedly chanted slogans against the Jordanian regime and insulted King Abdullah II and the Royal Court. Security forces fired tear gas at the protesters and went on a campaign to arrest the activists.

A security source told Ammon News that the slogans chanted during the protest went against Jordanian norms and standards of decency, in addition to defamation, slander, and distorting reputation of top figures in Jordan.

On Friday, around 50 protesters in the southern governorate of Tafileh (170 km south of Amman) staged an evening demonstration calling for the release of Mohammad Ma'brah, wo was arrested earlier on Friday during a protest for reportedly chanting slogans against the royal Hashemite family following Friday prayers.

In the aftermath of the incident, 4 people were arrested in Tafileh governorate and 2 others were arrested in the Tafaileh neighbourhood in Amman.

In a related incident, dozens of young men took to the streets of Al Tafaileh neighborhood in Amman Saturday night to protest the arrest of the nine activists, including Mohammad Roud, Bassam Amayreh, and Moin Harasees.


Ammon News learned that the nine activists will be facing five major charges, including breaching security and order, Lese-Majeste, slander and defamation, violating public decency, and opposing the existing regime.

One activist faces charges of stabbing an intelligence officer during a previous incident.

The protests and arrests during the weekend in both Tafileh and Tafaileh neighborhood is the second such wave after security forces arrested over a dozen activists back in March over similar charges, in which the activists allegedly chanted slogans against the royal family, but were later released upon directives of King Abdullah II in April.

Meanwhile, tense demonstrations took place in Tafileh, Tafaileh neighborhood in Amman, and Karak governorates late Saturday night calling for the release of the nine detainees and threatening to escalate protest measures against authorities.

The five other detainees, some of whom were arrested from a local cafe in Amman near Sports City Circle late Friday night, include Hussein Shbeilat, Ahmad Sawalqa, Khalid Harasees, Zeid Hajjaj, and Abdul Muhdi Awaaji.

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