After an intense two days, the staff of the Israeli embassy in Jordan has returned to Israel. They were joined by the wounded security guard who eliminated the Jordanian assailant that attacked him with a screwdriver in his home.
The scene of the attack in Jordan Photo Credit: Channel 2 News
“Welcome, you are in the State of Israel,” Netanyahu told Israel’s ambassador to Jordan, who thanked him for his efforts to bring the embassy staff home. The prime minister then spoke with the wounded security guard, who expressed his thanks and said “I feel fine, I am really grateful for everything” and added that he “felt that an entire country was behind me.”
According to the Prime Minister’s Office, the return of the emissaries was made possible thanks to close cooperation between Israel and Jordan during the last 24 hours.
A 17-year-old Jordanian stabbed the Israeli security guard who worked at the embassy in Amman on Sunday night apparently due to a dispute over money. The security guard responded by shooting the attacker, who eventually succumbed to his wounds. The family of the assailant subsequently demanded that the security guard stand trial and receive the death penalty.
Israel’s embassy in Jordan Photo Credit: Reuters/ Channel 2 News
Israel, however, refused to allow the Jordanian authorities to question the Israeli, claiming that according to the Vienna Convention, he has diplomatic immunity. The entire staff of the Israeli embassy in Jordan had been in lockdown following the attack. According to reports from Jordan yesterday, a Jordanian government official said that if Israel did not hand over the security guard, Amman would take diplomatic action.
The Israeli Foreign Affairs Ministry and Israeli security establishment were in contact with the Jordanian authorities as part of the efforts to bring the security guard to Israel. Israel reportedly sent Shin Bet Chief Nadav Argaman to Jordan in an attempt to end the diplomatic crisis, and Netanyahu and Jordan’s King Abdullah II were expected to speak over the phone earlier today (Monday) in order to ease tensions between the two countries.
The Israeli cabinet met this evening to discuss the crisis with Jordan, and it is unclear at this point if the Jordanians only allowed for the release of the Israeli security guard in exchange for the removal of the metal detectors from the Temple Mount.