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środa, 20 kwietnia 2011

Jordan rights watchdog blames police for March 25 clashes

AMMAN: Jordan’s state-funded National Center of Human Rights (NCHR) on Tuesday criticized the security authorities for using force to end a pro-democracy rally on March 25 that caused the first fatality in the country’s three months of demonstrations.
”The use of force by policemen to dismiss the protesters (from Nasser Square) represents a grave violation of the freedom of gathering, organization and expression,” the NCHR said in a report.
The report also blamed the security authorities for ”failure to take the necessary precautions for protecting demonstrators” and preventing attacks on them by regime loyalists.
The report, based on the findings of an investigation that involved all parties, challenged the authenticity of statements by Interior Ministry officials who alleged that policemen then intervened to end clashes between protesters of a pro-democracy group, calling itself the March 24, and rival demonstrators.
One man was killed and more than 120 hurt in the crackdown, including 58 policemen, the authorities said.
The NCHR also contended that the government’s failure to set up an independent panel to investigate the incident represented an ”encroachment on the guarantees of a fair trial and an encouragement for evading punishment”.
The March 25 crackdown on peaceful protesters drew sharp reactions from the opposition and trade unions that threatened to disrupt the work of the National Dialogue Committee set up recently by the government to consider means for carrying out political reforms ordered by King Abdallah.

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