Middle East

Jordan: Man dies in hospital after Amman clashes

Protesters demonstrate for political reform in front of a police water cannon in Amman (25 March)
Image caption Many people are reported to have been injured in Friday's clashes

A man has died after Jordanian security forces used batons and sprayed water to disperse a clash between pro-monarchy and pro-reform demonstrators in Amman.

Amer Khairy Saad told Reuters that his father, Khairy, had died in hospital.

He said police had beaten him as they were trying to disperse the opposing crowds who had gathered near the interior ministry in the capital.

Medics at Prince Hamzeh hospital confirmed his death to AFP news agency, without specifying the cause.

Many people are reported to have been injured in Friday's clashes.

Demand for reforms

The pro-reform protesters are demanding the resignation of Prime Minister Marouf al-Bakhit, reforms to parliament and for corrupt officials to stand trial.

King Abdullah appointed Mr Bakhit last month after large street protests.

Jordan's opposition has demanded electoral reforms that would see the prime minister directly elected and more powers granted to parliament.

In a letter published in Jordanian newspapers on Wednesday, King Abdullah urged Mr Bakhit to push through parliament reforms the monarch proposed in February after the last prime minister was sacked.

At the time, Jordanians had taken to the streets in largely peaceful protests calling for political reforms and action over high unemployment and rising prices.

Mr Bakhit is a retired army major-general who previously served as Jordan's prime minister from 2005 until his resignation in 2007.

Jordan is just one of the countries in the region where protests have been held to demand political changes after the presidents of Tunisia and Egypt were toppled in January and February.

More on this story