The Human Truth Foundation

Human Rights and Freedom in Jordan

By Vexen Crabtree 2018


Comments:
FB, LJ

#equality #freedom #human_rights #islam #jordan #politics #tolerance

Jordan
Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan

[Country Profile Page]
StatusIndependent State
CapitalAmman
Land Area 88 780km21
LocationAsia, Middle East
Population6.5m (2011)2
Life Expectancy74.18yrs (2017)3
GNI$10 111 (2017)4
ISO3166-1 CodesJO, JOR, 4005
Internet Domain.jo6
CurrencyDinar (JOD)7
Telephone+9628

Jordan is generally poor at ensuring human rights and freedom compared to the rest of the world. Jordan does better than average in eliminating modern slavery9, fighting corruption10 and in its Global Peace Index rating11. In 2017, sweeping reforms to the judiciary and justice system were proposed and parliament passed a disabilities law that prohibits discrimination against disabled people12. But unfortunately Jordan gets most other things wrong. It does worse than average in commentary from Human Rights Watch13, supporting personal, civil & economic freedoms14, LGBT equality15, opposing gender inequality16, its nominal commitment to Human Rights17 and in supporting press freedom18. And finally, it falls into the bottom 20 in fighting anti-semitic opinions19. "In 2017, Jordan continued to violate human rights, including restrictions on free expression, free assembly, and women´s rights"12. Jordan does not accept basic human rights regarding religion; only Islam is acceptable12.


1. Politics and Freedom

#antisemitism #burundi #corruption #eritrea #france #freedom #human_development #human_rights #indonesia #Jordan #mass_media #peace #politics #slavery

Jordanian law criminalizes speech deemed critical of the king, foreign countries, government officials and institutions, and Islam. [...]

In 2017, Jordanian lawmakers overhauled the country´s criminal procedure law, making positive changes that guarantee all suspects the right to access a lawyer from the time of arrest and during interrogations and create a legal aid fund to provide lawyers for suspects who cannot afford them. Under the changes, the law states that pretrial detention is an “exceptional measure” rather than the norm. [However] local governors continued to use provisions of the Crime Prevention Law of 1954to place individuals in administrative detention for up to one year, in circumvention of the Criminal Procedure Law. The National Center for Human Rights reported that 30,138 persons were administratively detained in 2016, some for longer than one year.

"World Report 2018" by Human Rights Watch (2018)12

Anti-Semite Opinions (2014)19
Pos.Lower is better
%19
1Laos0
2Philippines3
3Sweden4
...
91Morocco80
92Qatar80
93UAE80
94Jordan81
95Bahrain81
96Kuwait82
97Tunisia86
98Algeria87
World Avg36.8
q=101.
Corruption (2012-2016)10
Pos.Higher is better
Avg Score10
1Denmark90.8
2New Zealand90.6
3Finland89.4
...
54Malaysia50.0
55Namibia50.0
56Slovakia49.0
57Jordan48.6
58Bahrain48.4
59Croatia48.4
60Saudi Arabia47.4
61Cuba46.8
World Avg43.05
q=176.
Global Peace Index (2012)11
Pos.Lower is better11
1Iceland1.11
2New Zealand1.24
3Denmark1.24
...
59Oman1.89
60Malawi1.89
61Panama1.90
62Jordan1.90
63Indonesia1.91
64Serbia1.92
65Bosnia & Herzegovina1.92
66Moldova1.93
World Avg2.02
q=157.

Human Rights Watch Comments (2017)13
Pos.Higher is better
Score13
1UK9
2France9
3Germany9
...
94Iraq-6
95Bangladesh-6
96Bosnia & Herzegovina-6
97Jordan-6
98Kazakhstan-6
99Cuba-6
100Yemen-7
101Egypt-7
World Avg-1.9
q=123.
Nominal Commitment to HR (2009)17
Pos.Higher is better
Treaties17
1Argentina24
2Chile23
3Costa Rica23
...
113Kenya14
114Japan14
115Jamaica14
116Jordan14
117China14
118Mauritius14
119Botswana14
120Madagascar14
World Avg15.1
q=194.
Personal, Civil & Economic Freedom (2014)14
Pos.Lower is better
Rank14
1Hong Kong1
2Switzerland2
3New Zealand3
...
88Burkina Faso88
89Kenya88
90Bahrain88
91Jordan91
92Cape Verde92
93Botswana93
94Liberia94
95Lesotho94
World Avg79.7
q=159.

Press Freedom (2013)18
Pos.Lower is better18
1Finland638
2Netherlands648
3Norway652
...
130Libya3786
131Burundi3802
132Zimbabwe3812
133Jordan3847
134Thailand3860
135Morocco3904
136Ethiopia3957
137Tunisia3993
World Avg3249
q=178.

Slavery (2018)9
Pos.Lower is better
% Victims9
1Japan0.03
2Canada0.05
3Taiwan0.05
...
23Austria0.17
24Switzerland0.17
25Brazil0.18
26Jordan0.18
27Netherlands0.18
28Norway0.18
29Saudi Arabia0.19
30Bahrain0.19
World Avg0.65
q=167.

The taking of slaves has been an unwholesome feature of Human cultures since prehistory20. Private households and national endeavours have frequently been augmented with the use of slaves. The Egyptian and Roman empires both thrived on them for both purposes. Aside from labourers they are often abused sexually by their owners and their owners' friends21. The era of colonialism and the beginnings of globalisation changed nothing: the imprisonment and forced movements of labour continued to destroy many lives except that new justifications were invented based on Christian doctrine and the effort to convert non-Christians. By 1786 over 12 million slaves had been extracted from Africa and sent to colonial labour camps, with a truly atrocious condition of life22. But they were not the only ones to blame; in Africa internal nations such as the Asantes sold and bought tens of thousands of slaves23.

The abolition of the slave trade was a long and slow process. Until a relatively modern time, even philosophers, religious leaders and those concerned with ethics justified, or ignored, the problem of slavery24. The first abolitionists were always the slaves themselves. Their protests and rebellions caused the industry to become too expensive to continue. After that, it was the economic costs of maintain slave colonies that led the British to reject and then oppose the slave trade globally. Finally, the enlightenment-era thinkers of France encouraged moral and ethical thinking including the declaration of the inherent value of human life and human dignity25. A long-overdue wave of compassionate and conscientious movements swept across the West, eliminating public support for slavery, until the industries and churches that supported it had no choice but to back down.

'Modern slavery' includes forced labour (often of the under-age), debt bondage (especially generational), sexual slavery, chattel slavery and other forms of abuse, some of which can be surprisingly difficult to detect, but often target those fleeing from warzones and the vulnerable.26. Some industries (diamond, clothing, coal) from some countries (Burundi9, Eritrea9, Indonesia27) are a particular concern. The Walk Free Foundation, say that in 2016, 40.3 million people were living in modern slavery28.

2. Gender Equality

#gender #Jordan #misogyny #politics #women

Gender Inequality (2015)16
Pos.Lower is better16
1Switzerland0.04
2Denmark0.04
3Netherlands0.04
...
108Namibia0.47
109Burundi0.47
110Bhutan0.48
111Jordan0.48
112Cambodia0.48
113Morocco0.49
114Guatemala0.49
115Nepal0.50
World Avg0.36
q=159.

Gender inequality is not a necessary part of early human development. Although a separation of roles is almost universal due to different strengths between the genders, this does not have to mean that women are subdued, and, such patriarchialism is not universal in ancient history. Those cultures and peoples who shed, or never developed, the idea that mankind ought to dominate womankind, are better cultures and peoples than those who, even today, cling violently to those mores.

Year Women Can Vote29
Pos.Lower is better
Year29
1New Zealand1893
2Australia1902
3Finland1906
...
161Bahrain1973
162San Marino1973
163Andorra1973
164Jordan1974
165Solomon Islands1974
166Sao Tome & Principe1975
167Cape Verde1975
168Angola1975
World Avg1930
q=189.

Jordan is an unequal country, with male rights dominating those of women.

Jordan discriminates against women in accordance with policies tied up with its official religion, needlessly restricting marriages, divorces and custody if a woman married a non-Muslim12.

Thankfully, in 2017 Jordan "abolished article 308 of the country´s 1960 penal code, an infamous provision that allowed perpetrators of sexual assault to avoid punishment if they married their victims"12.

See:

3. LGBT Equality and Tolerance

#equality #homosexuality #human_rights #intolerance #Jordan #sexuality #tolerance

LGBT Equality (2017)15
Pos.Higher is better
Score15
1Netherlands103
2Belgium90
3Sweden86
...
102Belize15
103Belarus15
104Kyrgyzstan15
105Jordan12
106China12
107Djibouti11
108Mali11
109Tajikistan11
World Avg12.6
q=196.

Discrimination against Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) folk is rife across the world. Legal restrictions co-exist alongside social stigmatisation and physical violence30. LGBT tolerance and equal rights have been fought for country-by-country across the world, often against tightly entrenched cultural and religious opposition. Adult consensual sexual activity is a Human Right, protected by privacy laws31. Despite this, homosexual activity is outlawed in around 80 countries30. The Social & Moral LGBT Equality Index was created to compare countries and regions, granting points to each country for a variety of factors including how long gay sex has been criminalized and the extent of LGBT legal rights. Graded negative points are given for criminality of homosexuality, unequal ages of consent, legal punishments and for not signing international accords on LGBT tolerance. The signs in many developed countries are positive, and things are gradually improving. Europe is by far the least prejudiced region (Scandinavia in particular being exemplary). The Middle East and then Africa are the least morally developed, where cultural bias goes hand-in-hand with state intolerance, all too often including physical violence.

In July 2017, high-level Jordanian officials used an inquiry into the legality of a Jordanian online magazine to issue statements against lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) people. The ministers of justice and interior wrote separate official letters to the minister of political and parliamentary affairs declaring their broad intolerance of LGBT people and making it clear that the government would not defend the rights of LGBT Jordanians.

"World Report 2018" by Human Rights Watch (2018)12

4. Jordan Overall National and Social Development

#human_development #Jordan

Social & Moral
Development Index
32
Pos.Higher is better
Points32
1Denmark84.0
2Sweden83.9
3Finland83.5
...
84Ecuador53.5
85Kuwait53.5
86Kyrgyzstan53.4
87Jordan53.3
88Bahamas53.3
89Cuba53.0
90Morocco52.8
91Oman52.8
92Bolivia52.8
World Avg53.8
q=198.

The Social and Moral Development Index concentrates on moral issues and human rights, violence, public health, equality, tolerance, freedom and effectiveness in climate change mitigation and environmentalism, and on some technological issues. A country scores higher for achieving well in those areas, and for sustaining that achievement in the long term. Those countries towards the top of this index can truly said to be setting good examples and leading humankind onwards into a bright, humane, and free future. See: What is the Best Country in the World? An Index of Morality, Conscience and Good Life.

5. Freedom of Belief and Religion

#atheism #islam #jordan

Jordan does not accept basic human rights regarding religion and belief12. There is no official way to be non-religious, it is illegal to promote religions other than Islam, converting away from Islam is illegal, and, blasphemy laws are used to prevent any meaningful religious discussion except glorification of Islam12. Muslims must abide by a particular interpretation of Sharia law12.

The International Humanist and Ethical Union produced a report in 2012 entitled "Freedom of Thought" (2012)33, in which they document bias and prejudice at the national level that is based on religion, belief and/or lack of belief. Their entry for Jordan states:

The Constitution, in Article 14, provides for the freedom to practice the rites of one's religion and faith in accordance with the customs that are observed in the Kingdom, unless they violate public order or morality. According to the Constitution, the state religion is Islam and the King must be Muslim. The Constitution, in Articles 103-106, also provides that matters concerning the personal status of Muslims are under the exclusive jurisdiction of Sharia courts which apply Sharia in their proceedings. Personal status, or "family law", includes religion, marriage, divorce, child custody, and inheritance. Personal status law follows the guidelines of the Hanafi school of Islamic jurisprudence, which is applied in cases that are not explicitly addressed by civil status legislation. Matters of personal status of non-Muslims whose religion is recognized by the Government are under the jurisdiction of Tribunals of Religious Communities, according to Article 108.

The Government prohibits conversion from Islam and efforts to proselytize Muslims. The Jordanian Penal Code makes insulting Islam, the Prophet Muhammad, or any Muslim's feelings, a crime punishable by up to three years in prison. Atheists must associate themselves with a recognized religion for purposes of official identification. Employment applications for government positions occasionally contain questions about an applicant's religion.

"Freedom of Thought" by IHEU (2012)33

Current edition: 2018 Dec 30
http://www.humantruth.info/jordan_human_rights_and_freedom.html
Parent page: Jordan (Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan)

All #tags used on this page - click for more:

#antisemitism #atheism #burundi #corruption #equality #eritrea #france #freedom #gender #homosexuality #human_development #human_rights #indonesia #intolerance #islam #Jordan #mass_media #misogyny #peace #politics #sexuality #slavery #tolerance #women

Social Media

References: (What's this?)

Book Cover

Anti-Defamation League. (ADL)
(2014) ADL Global 100, Executive Summary. Accessed on global100.adl.org on 2017 Jan 02. The numbers given are of those who state that racist stereotyped statements about Jews are true; they have to agree to 6 or more of the 11 statements to be counted. An example statements is "Jews are hated because of the way they behave". The data was collected from 53,100 interviews across 101 countries plus the West Bank and Gaza. The global average is 26%.

Casely-Hayford, Gus
(2012) The Lost Kingdoms of Africa. Published by Bantram Press. A hardback book.

Crabtree, Vexen
(2019) "What is the Best Country in the World? An Index of Morality, Conscience and Good Life" (2019). Accessed 2019 Jan 13.

Donnelly, Jack
(2013) Universal Human Rights in Theory and Practice. 3rd edition. Published by Cornell University Press.

The Fraser Institute
(2016) The Human Freedom Index. Published by The Cato Institute, The Fraser Institute and the Friedrich Naumann Foundation for Freedom. Covers data up to 2014. On www.fraserinstitute.org/.../human-freedom-index-2016.

Human Rights Watch
(2018) World Report 2018. Covering the events of 2017.

IHEU. International Humanist and Ethical Union.
(2012) Freedom of Thought. A copy can be found on iheu.org/...Freedom of Thought 2012.pdf, accessed 2013 Oct 28.

Klein, Naomi
(2004) No Logo. Originally published 2000, HarperCollins, London, UK. A paperback book.

McCall, Andrew
(1979) The Medieval Underworld. 2004 edition. Published by Sutton Publishing. A paperback book.

Thomson, Oliver
(1993) A History of Sin. Published by Canongate Press. A hardback book.

United Nations
(2011) Human Development Report. Published by the UN Development Programme. This edition had the theme of Sustainability and Equity: A Better Future for All. Available on hdr.undp.org/... UN Development Program: About the Human Development Index.
(2017) Human Development Report. Published by the UN Development Programme. Data for 2015. Available on hdr.undp.org/.

Walk Free Foundation
(2018) Global Slavery Index. Published on www.walkfreefoundation.org/.

Footnotes

  1. World Bank data on data.worldbank.org accessed 2013 Nov 04.^
  2. UN (2011) .^
  3. UN (2017). Table 1.^
  4. UN (2017). Gross National Income, per person. Table 1.^
  5. International Standards Organisation (ISO) standard ISO3166-1, on www.iso.org, accessed 2013 May 01.^
  6. Top level domains (TLDs) are managed by the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA) on www.iana.org.^
  7. According to ISO4217.^
  8. According to ITU-T.^
  9. Walk Free Foundation (2018) .^^
  10. Transparency International Corruption Perceptions Index (2017). Accessed 2017 Dec 30. The scores given are the TI average for the years 2012-2016.^^
  11. ^^
  12. Human Rights Watch (2018). p305-310.^^^^^
  13. Human Rights Watch (2018). Negative and positive comments have been added to create a score for each country covered in the report.^^
  14. Fraser Institute, the (2016). Covers data for 2014.^^
  15. Sources:^^
  16. UN (2017). Table 5. Lower is better.^^
  17. Max possible=24. Total amount of treaties ratified. Nominal Commitment to Human Rights report published by UCL School of Public Policy, London, UK, at ucl.ac.uk/spp/research/research-projects/nchr accessed 2011 Apr 30.^^
  18. Reporters Without Borders Report "2013 World Press Freedom Index: Dashed hopes after spring" at fr.rsf.org/.../classement_2013_gb-bd.pdf accessed 2013 Feb.^^
  19. ADL (2014). Lower is better.^^
  20. Thomson (1993). p28.^
  21. McCall (1979). p180.^
  22. Thomson (1993). p166.^
  23. Casely-Hayford (2012). p253.^
  24. Thomson (1993). p31.^
  25. Thomson (1993). p199.^
  26. Thomson (1993). p28-29.^
  27. Klein (2004) .^
  28. Walk Free Foundation (2018). p2.^
  29. "What is the Best Country in the World? An Index of Morality, Conscience and Good Life: 2.9. Women Stand for Election & Vote" by Vexen Crabtree (2019)^
  30. Donnelly (2013). Chapter 16 "Nondiscrimination for All: The Case of Sexual Minorities" p278.^
  31. Donnelly (2013). Chapter 16 "Nondiscrimination for All: The Case of Sexual Minorities" p289. According to a 1992 ruling of the Human Rights Committee, which declared that 'it is undisputed that adult consensual sexual activity in private is covered by the concept of privacy' when discussing Article 17 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. See Human Rights Committee, Communication 488/1992, paragraph 8.2.^
  32. "What is the Best Country in the World? An Index of Morality, Conscience and Good Life" by Vexen Crabtree (2019)^
  33. IHEU (2012) .^

©2019 Vexen Crabtree all rights reserved.
This site uses the HTF Disclaimer (as linked here)