Violence leaves 2 dead at Israeli embassy in Jordan

by Garry Watts July 25, 2017, 0:09
Violence leaves 2 dead at Israeli embassy in Jordan

Israel's security Cabinet held a meeting to discuss new security measures as well as recent violence including the incident at the embassy in Amman.

The PSD added in a statement that preliminary investigations indicate that the two Jordanians had entered the embassy's compound to do carpentry work, Jordanian news agency Petra said. Haaretz and Walla both quoted Israel officials as saying that a senior Israeli defense official will travel to Jordan later on Monday as the incident threatens to wreak havoc with one of the few relatively stable relationships Israel has with an Arab state.

A major holy site in Jerusalem, known to Muslims as the Noble Sanctuary and to Jews as the Temple Mount, has been a frequent source of friction.

(AP Photo/Mahmoud Illean). Israeli border police officers stand near newly installed cameras at the entrance to the Al Aqsa Mosque compound, in Jerusalem's Old City, Sunday, July 23, 2017.

An Israeli government official said talks were underway whether to evacuate the embassy staff, given the tensions in Jordan.

Muslim religious leaders have alleged that Israel is trying to expand its control at the site under the guise of security, a claim Israel denies. "They told us، 'Whoever prays will be taken to jail'". Netanyahu said that the government was "carrying out discussions at all levels with security officials in Israel and the government in Amman in order to bring this situation to a resolution".

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The incident is threatening to complicate the crisis over the holy site, which is administered by Muslim authorities under the auspices of Jordan.

The incident comes against a background of tension over the Al-Aqsa mosque in Jerusalem.

On Friday, three Israeli settlers were killed by a Palestinian in Halamish settlement north of Ramallah, West Bank, and Israeli PM Netanyahu announced his home will be demolished. The attacker had come to change furniture at the house, within the embassy compound.

Israel captured the shrine, along with east Jerusalem and other territories, in the 1967 war.

Two Palestinians died, including one when a petrol bomb exploded prematurely.

Also Sunday, a rocket fired at Israel from Gaza hit an open area, the army said, causing no injuries.

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