Jordan cabinet undergoes reshuffle after virus rule breach

Jordan’s King Abdullah II reshuffles the government, with 10 officials out including the interior and justice ministers, after they last week breached regulations in place to stem the spread of coronavirus.

The pair have been asked to step down after reports they had attended a dinner in Amman with a total of nine people, when the law allowed a maximum of six.

Mazen al-Faraya, a general and vice president of the National Center for Security and Crisis Management, is appointed as interior minister.

Ahmed Ziyadat, State Secretary for Legal Affairs, is named as justice minister.

Foreign Minister Aymane Safadi has not been replaced.

Ministers responsible for key economic portfolios also largely remain in their posts, apart from the ministers for transport and agriculture.

The number of ministers ha also been cut by two to 30, the royal palace says.

Oraib Rantawi, director of the Al Quds Centre for Political Studies in Amman, says the reshuffle raised eyebrows.

“I think the time has come, as the nation’s centenary approaches, to reconsider the way governments are formed in Jordan… otherwise Jordan will remain the world record holder for the number of former ministers,” he says.

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