Video: Jordan distributing bread, essential goods as coronavirus curfew extended

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Jordan began distributing bread and essential goods across the country on Tuesday, during a tight lockdown to try to rein in the spread of the coronavirus.

Minister of State for Media Amjad Adailah said the government had made arrangements with municipal councils to deliver enough bread, water, gas cylinders and basic medicines across the country for the rest of the week.


The authorities worry lifting the curfew for a few hours for people would create panic buying and hoarding of supplies that would risk the accelerating spread of the virus.

Confirmed cases of the illness caused by the novel coronavirus in the country of 10 million have steadily risen within a week to 127 people from six. There have been no deaths.

Jordan announced a nationwide curfew on Saturday (March 21) under draconian emergency laws that give authorities sweeping powers that restrict civil and political rights. The curfew has been extended indefinitely.

The country has deployed thousands of troops at checkpoints in main cities to ensure the curfew was heeded, saying many residents had flouted earlier calls to stay home.

Humanitarian groups say many of Jordan's poor, who make up the majority of the population, are already suffering from scarce food supplies and would be further hurt by an extended curfew.

The government has said it will help low-income wage earners by delivering subsidized bread and food items that have a cap on their retail prices.

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