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Video of man beating nephew sparks outrage

Child in family protection unit, man taken into custody

By Bahaa Al Deen Al Nawas - Jun 16,2019 - Last updated at Jun 16,2019

AMMAN — A video purportedly showing a man beating his eight-year-old nephew in Jerash went viral on social media on Friday sparking outrage.

Throughout the two minutes and 22 second video, the child’s uncle from his mother’s side can be seen abusing him verbally and physically in a humiliating way.

Jerash Governor Maamoun Lozi told The Jordan Times on Saturday that as soon as he saw the video, he contacted the authorities to initiate an immediate investigation and arrest the offender. The authorities revealed that the video was taken six months ago.

When asked about the whereabouts of the child, whose father is said to have died recently, Lozi said that he was taken to a Family Protection Department unit in Jerash, located 48km north of Amman. The governor noted that, in coordination with the Ministry of Social Development, financial aid will be provided to the child.

He added that the interior minister was briefed on the full scope of what happened, and that the rest of the child’s family has gathered at the unit as well to sort things out.

Later on Saturday, the uncle turned himself in to Jerash’s police, and was referred to the Family Protection Department for further investigation, the Jordan News Agency, Petra, reported.

A medical examination revealed that the child is in good condition, Petra reported, adding that the child is now at a social care institution where his case will be studied to ensure that what he faced does not happen again.

MP Wafa Bani Mustafa confirmed to The Jordan Times over the phone that the video was taken six months ago, but somehow it went viral recently, urging the public to stop sharing the video as it will afflict further pain on the child, especially from his peers.

“There needs to be executive authorities and an allocated budget to have centres that can take care of child abuse victims and help them overcome what they have faced, while protecting them from any further violence,” she said.

The lawmaker called for stringent action against the offender while also stressing the need for ways to deal with children coping with trauma.

There is a shortcoming in protecting individuals from domestic violence, especially when it comes to juveniles, she said, noting that the focus needs to be on the roots of the problem instead of focusing on individual cases for a time and then forgetting about them.

“There is the question of how many specialists there are out there who can rehabilitate people physically and mentally after facing domestic violence, and so far there is no answer,” the MP said.

Some people discipline their children by beating and insulting them, which Bani Mustafa said are destructive ways of parenting that shed light on how some families need to learn how to nurture their children emotionally, instead of only nurturing them physically, which is never enough. 

On social media, Facebook users also said the video should not be shared anymore as it is “too painful to watch” and described the offender as “a monster without a conscience”.

Others have demanded a public trial to set an example to others.

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