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Senate rejects deputies’ amendments on using tear gas for crowd control

By JT - Apr 16,2015 - Last updated at Apr 16,2015

AMMAN — The Senate on Thursday rejected the Lower House’s amendments to the draft prohibition of chemical weapons law, scrapping a provision allowing the use of chemical agents for crowd control.

According to the Jordan News Agency, Petra, the Upper House insisted that all chemical agents, including tear gas, should not be used even in crowd control as MPs had proposed. 

Senators said the decision is aimed at bringing the law into harmony with the Convention on the Prohibition of the Development, Production, Stockpiling and Use of Chemical Weapons and on Their Destruction, which Jordan has ratified, according to Petra.

During a session last week, the Lower House passed the draft law, restricting the use of chemical agents for crowd control solely to tear gas under a proposal made by MP Abdul Karim Dughmi (Mafraq, 1st District). 

As reworded by Dughmi and then approved by MPs, “only” tear gas in the form of grenades or aerosol cans and “no other chemical agents” shall be used by security bodies to control riots.

At the time, Interior Minister Hussein Majali said protests, rallies and demonstrations of a political nature are not classified as acts of rioting, stressing that authorities have never used chemical agents to contain such peaceful gatherings.

Also during Thursday session, the Senate passed the Jordan Medical Association Law as referred from the Lower House, extending the term of the syndicate’s council to three years instead of two.

Senators also endorsed the 2015 draft amendments to the Military Penal Code as referred from MPs.

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