Two Jor­da­ni­ans killed, Is­raeli wounded at Am­man Em­bassy

Is­rael cites diplo­matic im­mu­nity as Jor­dan seeks to ques­tion se­cu­rity guard

Muscat Daily - - REGION -

Am­man, Jor­dan - Jor­dan said on Mon­day it was look­ing to ques­tion an Is­raeli se­cu­rity guard who killed two Jor­da­ni­ans at the Am­man Em­bassy com­pound, as Is­rael in­sisted he had diplo­matic im­mu­nity.

A Jor­da­nian gov­ern­ment source, who de­clined to be named, said Is­rael was ‘still ex­am­in­ing the re­quest’ to quiz the guard in­volved in Sun­day’s in­ci­dent, which ac­cord­ing to Is­raeli of­fi­cials saw a Jor­da­nian at­tack the guard with a screw­driver.

The se­cu­rity guard shot dead the Jor­da­nian at­tacker, while a sec­ond Jor­da­nian there at the time was also killed - ap­par­ently by ac­ci­dent.

A Jor­da­nian se­cu­rity source named the first dead man as 17 year old Mo­hammed Jawawdeh and the sec­ond as Bashar Ha­marneh, a doc­tor who was in the res­i­den­tial quar­ter of the Em­bassy at the time of the in­ci­dent. He said the Is­raeli is the deputy di­rec­tor of se­cu­rity at the Em­bassy.

Is­rael’s For­eign Min­istry said Jawawdeh, who had gone to the com­pound to in­stall fur­ni­ture, stabbed the se­cu­rity guard in the back with a screw­driver.

It said as a for­eign diplo­mat the guard was im­mune from in­ves­ti­ga­tion un­der the Vi­enna Con­ven­tion but the Jor­da­nian gov­ern­ment source said se­cu­rity forces were seek­ing Is­raeli per- mis­sion to ques­tion him. “Is­rael is still ex­am­in­ing the re­quest,” the source said. “There is no need for a diplo­matic es­ca­la­tion.”

Is­raeli Prime Min­is­ter Ben­jamin Ne­tanyahu said they would seek to find an agree­ment, vow­ing to bring the guard home as soon as pos­si­ble.

‘We are hold­ing con­tacts with Jor­da­nian se­cu­rity and gov­ern­ment of­fi­cials in or­der to bring the in­ci­dent to a close ASAP,’ he said in a state­ment. ‘I as­sured the se­cu­rity of­fi­cer that we will see to bring­ing him back to Is­rael, we have ex­pe­ri­ence in this.’

Jawawdeh’s fa­ther Zakariya said he wanted ‘the truth’, urg­ing au­thor­i­ties to view CCTV footage from se­cu­rity cam­eras at the Em­bassy. “My son has no in­ter­est in pol­i­tics. He does not fol­low any ex­trem­ist ide­ol­ogy,” he said.

The gov­ern­ment source said an ini­tial in­ves­ti­ga­tion in­di­cated that Jawawdeh and the se­cu­rity guard ‘fell out over some dis­pute which led to a stab­bing and a shoot­ing’.

Is­rael and Jor­dan are bound by a 1994 peace treaty.

But ten­sions have been high in re­cent days af­ter Is­rael put in place se­cu­rity mea­sures at the highly sen­si­tive Al Haram Al Sharif mosque com­pound in East Jerusalem, known to Jews as Tem­ple Mount. Is­rael in­stalled metal de­tec­tors at en­trances to the site fol­low­ing an at­tack nearby on July 14 that killed two of its po­lice­men.

Pales­tini­ans view the move as Is­rael as­sert­ing fur­ther con­trol over the com­pound, home to Al Aqsa mosque and Dome of the Rock, and con­sid­ered Is­lam’s third holi­est site.


Se­cu­rity forces stand guard out­side the Is­raeli Em­bassy in the Rabiyeh neigh­bour­hood of Am­man on Sun­day night

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