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Violent protests in Syria, Bahrain, Yemen – and now Jordan

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Jordan today became the latest Arab country to adopt violent repression as its response to protest – inspired, perhaps, by seeing similar tactic used by US allies like Bahrain and Yemen with little retribution from Washington.

This afternoon, police shut down a major protest camp in Amman, using water cannons. Mubarak-style thugs, widely believed to be hired by the regime, attacked the protesters with sticks and stones. Local news sources are reporting one death and nearly 100 injured.

"It was a disaster," says Fakher Daas, a leader from Jordan's Popular Unity Party who was in the camp. "They surrounded us from the four [sides], thugs and policemen and darak [riot police]. … Thugs were throwing stones from high buildings. … We ran away, but there was nowhere to run."

Later, there were multiple eyewitness reports of police surrounding hospitals and arresting patients or those trying to enter.

The crackdown comes as other Arab regimes are becoming more confident, and flexing their muscles against protesters. Last week, Gulf countries – most notably Saudi Arabia – sent troops to Bahrain to violently suppress protests there, resulting in several deaths.

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