Following Election, Jordan's King Asks Prime Minister to Form New Government

Jordanian Prime Minister Hani Mulki, who has held senior diplomatic and ministerial posts, is given another term to continue to try to rejuvenate a sluggish economy.

Jordan's King Abdullah II, right, with his son Crown Prince Hussein, during celebration of the 100-year anniversary of the Great Arab Revolt, in Amman, Jordan, June 2, 2016.
Muhammad Hamed/Reuters

REUTERS - Jordanian Prime Minister Hani Mulki has been asked by the king to form a new government after a parliamentary election, a palace statement said on Sunday.

Mulki, 64, who has held a string of senior diplomatic and ministerial posts, has been given another term to continue to try to rejuvenate a sluggish economy and revive business confidence at a time of regional turmoil.

Parliament is expected to convene next month with Jordan's Muslim Brotherhood gaining a foothold after ending a decade-long boycott and returning to the fray as the mainstay of a broad civic alliance.

The alliance, which included prominent independent figures and former government officials, won fifteen seats in the 130-member parliament..

Although the alliance will not be able to block legislation or cabinet appointments, it should nevertheless bring livelier debate to what has been almost a rubber-stamp assembly whose passivity has allowed successive governments to enact draconian temporary laws restricting public freedoms.

Mulki, who was appointed last May and charged with conducting the election, was asked by King Abdullah to form a new cabinet, the royal palace said.

Under the constitution, most powers rest with the king, who appoints the government, approves legislation and can dissolve parliament.

A government source told Reuters the new government was expected to be sworn in by the end of this week.