King Abdullah II of Jordan on Sunday ordered the release of 19 political activists charged with insulting him during pro-reform demonstrations last month, a palace official said. The decision was taken after the king met today with tribal leaders in th southern city of Tafileh, who urged the king to pardon the activists.
Six of the men were arrested in mid-March after a demonstration in
Tafileh. The other 13 were detained after a protest outside the
prime minister's office in Amman. Jordanian military prosecutors have accused the young activists of
incitement against the regime, rioting and insulting the king. Jordan's Islamists and other political movements as well as
international human rights organisations have repeatedly demanded their
In March, the military state security court freed an 18-year-old
political activist from jail after the king pardoned him for burning a
picture of the monarch.
Jordanians have been protesting since January 2011 to demand political and economic reforms.