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Campaigning for Jordan's first parliamentary elections in more than two decades began Saturday with candidate registrations and charges of restrictive action to block a fledgling nationalist movement from gaining a foothold in the 80-seat legislature.

The radical Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine said the recent arrest of 12 of its members in Jordan was aimed at discouraging not only some candiates but also a large portion of the electorate."It was not surprising at all that despite the Jordanian regime's claims that it wants democratic, free and honest elections, that it would arrest PFLP members and remind us of late Egyptian President Anwar Sadat's famous position of a democracy that has teeth," the PFLP said.