Crown Prince Hassan, ruling in the absence of his brother King Hussein, Saturday ruled out the possibility of reversing price hikes that sparked rioting this week and warned against the use of violence.
"We are not going to be deterred by expressions of violence," said Hassan, defending price increases on fuel, cigarettes and other imported goods and austerity measures announced Monday."Violence should stop . . . it will stop," Hassan said.
Witnesses said at least 10 people have been killed and more than 200 others hurt in the violence, which has spread across much of Jordan and is the bloodiest in Jordan since an army campaign in 1970 against Palestinian guerrillas. Hassan said seven people have died in the violence, one of them an officer, and 42 have been wounded.
Except for a small demonstration by 200 students at Jordan University in Amman, the rest of the country was reported quiet Saturday, witnesses said.
Hassan, heir to the Jordanian throne, said the kingdom's economic problems are serious and could not be solved by violence.
"People should not have illusions that everything will change because the problems we are facing are real. This country is known for not succumbing to pressure and violence," Hassan said.
He said "all issues" will be discussed once his brother returns to Amman.
Hassan confirmed arrests have been made in connection with the uprising, saying those detained were members of the banned Communist Party who "attempted to distribute pamphlets inciting the demonstrations to violence."