Jordan is burning: Violent riots broke out today (Friday) in several cities in Jordan, including the capital Amman, in response to the high cost of living and rising fuel prices. During the riots, a senior police officer was even killed as a result of being shot in the head, in addition to four other police officers who were injured.

The police sent a firm message that “we will punish with an iron hand anyone who threatens to harm human life and property.” During the riots, young people burned tires on a main road between Amman and the Dead Sea, disrupting traffic. Clashes also occurred in Irbid in the north, which is close to the Syrian border, and the police used tear gas to disperse protesters who threw stones.

The violent events come after a strike that started a few days ago by the truck drivers in the country, in protest that the high fuel prices are severely hurting their incomes. A number of stores in Amman and other cities in Jordan closed on Wednesday as a sign of solidarity with them.

The government promised that it would examine their demands, but made it clear that this would be difficult to carry out due to a commitment given to the International Monetary Fund as part of an economic reform, which limits the extent of subsidies to residents. Due to the situation, alertness was raised in the country. Also, the United States Embassy in the country warned its government employees against personal and official trips to South Jordan, due to the tense situation.

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