Journalist Arrested for Talking About Corona Vaccine

Amman, Dec 26 (AFP/APP): Jordan has arrested a journalist over an article alleging the coronavirus vaccine had arrived in the kingdom and that officials had received the jab, a judicial source said Saturday.

“The state security court prosecutor ordered the arrest Thursday of journalist Jamal Haddad, editor of news website Al-Wakaai, for writing that government officials had been vaccinated against the coronavirus,” the source said.

Haddad had been accused of “endangering public security and causing sedition and public disorder”, the source told AFP, declining to be identified.

He was to be detained for 15 days while awaiting trial. Al-Wakaai published Tuesday an article titled, “What about the people? Did the Pfizer (vaccine) arrive in secret, and have senior officials in the Jordanian government been vaccinated?” Jordan announced in mid-December that it had approved emergency use of the Pfizer-BioNTech coronavirus vaccine.

Health ministry official Wael al-Hayajneh said Wednesday that the vaccine would arrive in the kingdom at the end of January or the start of February. A source close to Haddad’s family told AFP on Saturday that the journalist had been transferred to hospital a day earlier “for high blood pressure and chest pain”.

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