Tension rises with Jordan after embassy guard shoots two

Jordanian policeman

Jordan is refusing to allow the security guard, who was defending himself against a stabbing attack, to leave the country.

An Israeli security guard at the Israel Embassy in Amman, Jordan, was wounded yesterday in an attempted stabbing at his home, Walla! News reports. The attacker had come to change furniture at the house, within the embassy compound. Besides the security guard, the landowner of the building and the two delivery workers were present. One of the workers stole behind the guard's back and started to stab him with a screwdriver. The guard fought back and shot the attacker dead. The landowner was also hit by gunfire and later died of his wounds.

Under the 1961 Vienna Convention of 1961, the security guard has immunity from investigation and arrest.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu spoke last night with Israeli ambassador to Jordan Einat Schlein and with the security guard. Israel's Ministry of Foreign Affairs and defense officials are working on various channels vis-a-vis the Jordanian government. For the time being, Jordan is refusing to allow the security guard or the embassy staff to leave the country.

The incident comes against a background of tension over the Al-Aqsa mosque in Jerusalem. It took place about an hour before a meeting of the security cabinet in Jerusalem to discuss the matter of the stationing of metal detector gates at the entrance to the Al-Aqsa site following a terrorist attack at the site in which two Israeli police men were killed, and the current tension and disturbances in Jerusalem. The installation of the metal detectors has caused anger among Palestinians and in the Muslim world generally. Jordan, which is the custodian of Islamic holy sites in Jerusalem, is demanding that Israel should remove the metal detectors, which it says are a violation of the status quo. Thousands of people have demonstrated against Israel in Amman in the past two weeks, while the speaker of the Jordanian parliament praised those who carried out the attack on the Israeli policemen, even though Jordan's King Abdullah condemned the attack in a telephone conversation with Netanyahu.

At Jordan's request, the Arab League will convene on Wednesday in Cairo to discuss the situation. The League has warned Israel that it is "playing with fire" and that Jerusalem is "a red line". Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdo?an has strongly attacked Israel and called on it to cease its actions on the Temple Mount.

Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes-online.com - on July 24, 2017

© Copyright of Globes Publisher Itonut (1983) Ltd. 2017

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