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Archive for Thursday, December 15, 2005

Premier vows to fight Islamic extremism

December 15, 2005

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— Jordan's new prime minister vowed Wednesday to wage a "pre-emptive" war against Islamic extremists, saying his government planned to fight terrorism by reforming religious teaching and granting greater freedom.

Speaking to parliament, Marouf al-Bakhit said the suicide bombers who killed 60 people in three hotels on Nov. 9 "only made us more determined to move forward in our pre-emptive war against terrorism and the 'takfiri' culture."

'Takfiri' is the ideology of militants who regard their Muslim opponents as infidels.

Last month's coordinated, triple suicide bombing was the deadliest terror attack in Jordan's history.

Jordanians, who pride themselves on living in a quiet corner of a violent region, took to the streets in mass protests against al-Qaida in Iraq, which claimed responsibility, and its Jordanian-born leader, Abu Musab al-Zarqawi.

The 110-member parliament will meet Sunday to debate a vote of confidence in al-Bakhit's 24-member Cabinet, which King Abdullah II swore in Nov. 27.

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