Tribal clashes at universities add to tensions

They may begin with a slur, a passing glance or an accidental shove. Student brawls that turn into tribal confrontations have become an increasingly worrying phenomenon on university campuses across Jordan, writes Rana F Sweis for The New York Times.

Already tested by tensions between ‘East Bank’ tribes and ‘West Bank’ Palestinians, and contested by pro-democracy activists, the country’s authorities must respond to rising inter-tribal hostilities among the young. “Tribal violence at universities is reaching an alarming level,” said Mohammad Nsour, a lawyer and associate professor in the faculty of law at the University of Jordan. “It has reached a level where we are reminded of the sectarian violence in Lebanon and Iraq.”

With 264,000 students enrolled in public and private universities, according to the Ministry of Higher Education, the descent into tribalism threatens to undermine both the rule of law and Jordan’s respected academic institutions.
Full report on The New York Times site