June 10,2016

AMMAN — The Environment Ministry on Thursday called on the Jordan Petroleum Refinery Company (JPRC) to abide by environmental regulations and to address the foul smells its facilities produce.

Zarqa Environment Director Inaam Abu Judeh said the ministry issued regulations to the JPRC urging it to deal with the issue, after Hashemiyeh area residents went on strike over the emissions, the Jordan News Agency, Petra, reported.

Abu Judeh said residents noticed a “high level” of gas leaks which detectors failed to sense, requiring the refinery to address the problem urgently to protect residents’ health.

The ministry is currently working with specialised institutions to carry out tests to identify the leaked gases, according to Petra.

Hashemiyeh residents held a sit-in on Wednesday night in front of the municipality building and met with Zarqa Governor Raed Adwan, Abu Judeh and several other officials over the issue.

The governor affirmed the citizens’ right to call for an investigation into all gases and smells emitted by JPRC facilities which could endanger their lives.

During the sit-in, residents of Hashemiyeh and surrounding areas said they organised the demonstration after repeated attempts to contact JPRC failed, noting that they have been suffering for six months.

They vowed to continue staging protests until the issue is resolved, Petra reported.