Jordan's King Names New Prime Minister

February 1, 2011

Mark Memmott

News is breaking from Jordan, where King Abdullah has reportedly fired the prime minister, the Associated Press and other news outlets are reporting.

The AP is calling it a sacking.

Reuters says "King Abdullah on Tuesday asked his former ex-military adviser Marouf Bakhit to form a new cabinet, an official said. The official said the monarch officially accepted the resignation of Prime Minister Samir Rifai, a wealthy politician and former court adviser, and asked Bakhit to form a new government."

As first Tunisia and then Egypt and Yemen have been rocked by anti-government demonstrations, Jordan has also seen protests in recent weeks over rising prices and unemployment.

Update at 8 a.m. ET. The Jordan News Agency (PETRA) writes that:

"His Majesty King Abdullah II on Tuesday asked Marouf Al Bakhit to form a new government to replace the cabinet of Prime Minister Samir Rifai.

"The new government will have the task of 'taking practical, swift, and tangible steps to launch a real political reform process, in line with the King's vision of comprehensive reform, modernization and development.' In the letter of designation to Bakhit, the King said the new cabinet should proceed 'with confidence to bolster democracy, and move ahead with nation building that opens the scopes for broad accomplishment to all dear sons of our country and secure them the safe and dignified life they deserve.' "

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