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Jordanian police arrest teachers protesting union's forced closure

Jordanian police forcibly dispersed peacefully protesting teachers [Getty]

Date of publication: 16 February, 2021

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Jordanian police have arrested teachers peacefully protesting last year's dissolution of the Jordanian Teachers Syndicate in the city of Irbid .

Jordanian authorities arrested a number of teachers protesting in the northern city of Irbid on Monday.

The teachers were expressing their continued anger at the dissolution of the Jordanian Teachers Syndicate. 

Jordanian security forces forcibly dispersed the protesting teachers from the Thaqafa Roundabout in Irbid, despite the peaceful nature of the demonstration and the mask-wearing and social distancing measures being observed by the teachers. 

A video from the event showed a large number of Jordanian police in riot gear advancing on the protesters. 

It is not known how many were arrested. 

Last July police raided and ordered the closure of the headquarters of the Jordanian Teachers Syndicate in Amman and 11 other branches of the syndicate across the country. 

All 13 of the syndicate's board members were arrested and later jailed; and the country’s attorney-general prohibited all reporting on the situation, a ban he extended to include social media and the sharing of social media comments. 

Read more: Teachers in Jordan are asking for fair pay. Instead, the government launched a violent crackdown

At the time of the syndicate’s closure, Michael Page, deputy Middle East director at Human Rights Watch, said, “Shuttering one of the Jordan’s few independent labor unions following a protracted dispute with the government and on dubious legal grounds raises serious concerns about the government’s respect for the rule of law.”

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