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Jordan's King Abdullah calls for early elections

  • Jordan's King Abdullah II has dissolved parliament, paving the way for early elections ahead of protests stemmed from the Arab Spring.

    The decree follows his pledge to bring in political reforms in a bid to avoid anti-government unrest.

    No date was given for the elections, but King Abdullah has previously stated he wanted fresh elections by the end of the year.

    Jordanians have been pushing for a greater say in how their country is run and demanding that graft be tackled.

    In July, Jordan's Muslim Brotherhood said its political party, the Islamic Action Front, would boycott the polls.

    The group has called for the monarch's powers to be curbed along with an overhaul of the parliamentary system in which the prime minister is appointed by the king rather than elected.

    King Abdullah recently said a new parliament would elect a prime minister early next year.

    Ahead of Thursday's royal decree, the Muslim Brotherhood said its "Friday to Rescue the Nation" rally to press for reforms would go ahead in central Amman.

    King Abdullah has been eager to show he is responsive to public dissatisfaction

    "We are calling for real reforms that restore power to Jordanian people and curb the powers of those who have seized power and influence for decades."

    So far, protests in Jordan have been more peaceful in comparison to other parts of the region.