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Jordan Sets Parliamentary Elections for Jan. 23, Petra News Says

Jordan will hold parliamentary elections on Jan. 23, the official Petra News Agency reported, citing the Independent Elections Commission.

Jordan’s King Abdullah II dissolved the lower house of parliament on Oct. 4 and ordered new elections. The dissolution meant the government of Prime Minister Fayez al-Tarawneh, sworn into office in May, had to hand in its resignation within a week, according to constitutional amendments that were introduced this year.

Almost two million voters have registered for the elections, Petra reported on Oct. 4, citing Hussein Bani Hani, a spokesman for the elections commission. There are about 3 million eligible voters in the kingdom, it says.

Jordan’s Muslim Brotherhood, which makes up the bulk of the opposition, has said it plans to boycott the elections. The group’s deputy leader, Zaki Bani Rsheid, said in July that the new elections law is undemocratic and doesn’t represent the will of the public.

The law allocates only 27 seats of the chamber’s 150 seats to proportional representation, which falls short of the 50 percent sought by the opposition. Jordan’s opposition is made up largely of Islamist groups that oppose the country’s peace treaty with Israel.

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