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Jordan’s King Abdullah II swears in new cabinet

The cabinet consists of 19 members led by Prime Minister Abdullah Nsur, making it the smallest government Jordan’s had in more than 40 years.

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Jordan's King Abdullah II walks past a guard of honor prior to the opening of the Jordanian Parliament in Amman on October 26, 2011. KHALIL MAZRAAWI/AFP/Getty Images (Khalil Mazraawi/AFP/Getty Images)

Jordan's King Abdullah II has sworn in a new cabinet headed by a prime minister chosen by lawmakers, the royal palace announced today.

This is the first time a Jordanian king has not picked the prime minister himself, the Associated Press reported.

Abdullah also consulted with the new prime minister, Abdullah Nsur, for nearly three weeks to pick the cabinet members, Reuters reported.

According to Reuters:

The monarch's rare consultations follow constitutional changes devolving powers away from the palace – a response to calls for reform prompted by uprisings across the Arab world and smaller scale protests inside Jordan.

The cabinet consists of 19 members led by Nsur, making it the smallest government Jordan’s had in more than 40 years, the AP reported.

"The goal of forming such a trim cabinet is to cut government spending," Mohammad Momani, who oversees the ministries of information, political development and parliamentary affairs, told Agence France-Presse.

There are 14 new cabinet members, including one woman, Reem Abu Hassan, who heads the social development ministry, according to AFP.

More from GlobalPost: Obama announces an additional $200 million to help Jordan with Syrian refugees
 

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/middle-east/jordan/130330/jordan-s-king-abdullah-ii-swears-new-cabinet