Associated and Deliverance Party faces harsh pressure, attack — legal experts

(File photo: Ameer Khalifeh/Jordan News)
AMMAN — Several Jordanian lawyers and human rights advocates have issued a statement condemning what they describe as "arbitrary measures" taken by the Independent Election Commission (IEC) in Jordan against the Associated and Deliverance Party and its members. اضافة اعلان

The lawyers and activists expressed their concern over what they described is a  fierce attack and harsh pressure faced by the party due to recent actions taken by the commission, AmmanNet reported.

The IEC recently decided to return the affiliation papers of approximately 135 members of the Associated and Deliverance Party and reserve their party membership.

The commission required the party to provide evidence of "the absence of a judicial ruling that violates honor or public morals and ethics" before reinstating their membership.

Party's response and IEC delayThe Associated and Deliverance Party criticized the commission for its untimely response, which came just one day before the deadline for parties to hold their general conferences.

Despite submitting their lists to the commission on April 19, the party had to wait three weeks for a response, causing further frustration and delays.

The party, on April 19, submitted a request to rectify its status in accordance with the new political parties law. Initially, they included the names of 1,080 members, and later added 35 more, surpassing the required minimum of 1,000 members.

However, within 48 hours of submitting the lists, approximately 80 members resigned, citing significant security pressures.

To compensate for the resignations, the party provided the commission with additional names. They planned to hold their general conference on Saturday, May 13, just one day before the legal deadline.

Commission's response and legal requirementsOn Wednesday, May 10, the commission responded to the party's request to rectify their status by stating that about 135 members did not meet the legal requirements due to ongoing cases against them.

The lawyers argued that, according to the Political Parties Law, party membership does not require a certificate of Non-Criminal Record certificate or a clean criminal record. Article 6 specifies that a member should not have been convicted of an offense that violates honor, morality, or public decency.

The burden of proof lies with the IEC, not the member, to invalidate party membership.

Lawyers raise concerns over rejected namesVarious lawyers and activists express concern over the rejection of names that include political activists and journalists facing trials related to political and opinion-related cases, AmmanNet reported.

In response, the spokesperson for the IEC, Muhammad Khair Al-Rawashdeh, clarified in a press interview that the commission does not require a certificate of Non-Criminal Record certificate as a condition for accepting party membership.

However, he added, the commission may request such a certificate for some individuals to ease the financial burden on the party.

Rawashdeh emphasized that the commission is committed to implementing the law while facilitating the registration process for political parties and their members.

Calls for respect of rights and legal processThe lawyers and activists who issued the statement expressed their deep concern about the state of rights and freedoms in Jordan, urging authorities to respect the constitutional right of Jordanians to establish political parties.

They also condemned the illegal and arbitrary measures taken against the Associated and Deliverance Party, including the alleged threats and pressure on its members and their families to force them to resign.

These actions violate the constitutional and legal rights of Jordanians, as stated in Article 4/2 of the Political Parties Law, which explicitly prohibits attacks or punishment based on party affiliation.

The lawyers and activists argued that such pressure not only undermines the right to establish political parties but also infringes upon other fundamental rights, including the right to work, freedom of movement, and personal safety. They highlighted that tactics such as preventing individuals from traveling, terminating their employment, and resorting to physical threats are reminiscent of outdated practices that contradict the authorities' claims of political openness and reform.

The statement concluded with a call to the authorities to adhere to the provisions of the constitution and the law, immediately cease unconstitutional and illegal measures against individuals, civil society organizations, and political parties, and specifically demand the removal of obstructions hindering the Associated and Deliverance Party's efforts to rectify its legal status.

Read more National news
Jordan News