Jordan King Abdullah Changes Cabinet Again Amid Protests

Jordan’s King Abdullah ordered a reshuffle of the cabinet today, the second government change since pro-democracy protests started earlier this year.

Eleven new cabinet members in Prime Minister Marouf Bakhit’s government, including the interior, information and justice ministers, were sworn in, the country’s state-run news agency Petra said. The reshuffle falls short of demands by the opposition, which organized large demonstrations yesterday to demand the resignation of the Bakhit government.

Jordan’s opposition, led by Islamists, has been staging demonstrations since the start of the year to demand constitutional and political changes, as well as an end to corruption. King Abdullah changed the government after street protests and appointed Bakhit in February. The monarch has promised to ease restrictions on political parties and allow the formation of governments based on a parliamentary majority, without saying when it will happen.

Three members of Jordan’s parliament resigned and another 54 said June 30 they will boycott house sessions in a dispute over an alleged case of corruption linked to an abandoned plan to build a casino in the Muslim country. The Islamic Action Front, the largest opposition party in the kingdom, said Bakhit and other ministers were involved in the project and demanded the resignation of the government.

To contact the reporter on this story: Nayla Razzouk in Amman at nrazzouk2@bloomberg.net; Dahlia Kholaif in Kuwait at dkholaif@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Andrew J. Barden in Dubai at barden@bloomberg.net.

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