Patterns of Global Terrorism 2003 - Jordan

The Jordanian Government continued to strongly support global counterterrorist efforts while remaining vigilant against the threat of terrorism at home. Jordan was highly responsive to the security needs of US citizens in country and played a critical role in thwarting attempts to exploit Jordanian territory for attacks in Israel.

Jordan aggressively pursued suspected terrorists and successfully prosecuted and convicted many involved in plots against US or Israeli interests. Jordanian authorities, in mid-January 2003, convicted 10 Jordanians of weapons charges but acquitted them of participating in a plot to target US interests in Jordan. Jordan is working closely with US officials to investigate the murder in late October of USAID officer Laurence Foley. In December, Jordanian authorities arrested two men, a Libyan and a Jordanian, who later admitted to carrying out the assassination after receiving money from al-Qaida leader Abu Musab al-Zarqawi. The two have been charged with the murder and remain in Jordanian custody awaiting trial.

Suspected terrorists continued attempts to exploit Jordanian territory to transit weapons to and from groups in neighboring states, or to use Jordanian territory to facilitate terrorist attacks. Jordanian authorities have successfully intercepted such transiting weapons and personnel on virtually all of its borders. In June, Jordan rendered to Lebanese security authorities three Lebanese Hizballah members arrested after allegedly trying to smuggle weapons destined for the West Bank into Jordan. Jordanian authorities in June also reportedly arrested three Jordanian youths suspected of planning to infiltrate into Israel to conduct terrorist attacks. In July, four Syrians were sentenced to prison terms for illegally possessing explosives they intended to transport to the West Bank. In October, Jordan's State Security Court sentenced four individuals to prison terms ranging from five to eight years after convicting them of possessing and attempting to transport machineguns and missiles into the West Bank.

In May, Jordan's State Security Court indicted six unnamed suspects in connection with a bombing in late February of a Jordanian counterterrorism official's vehicle, killing two passersby.

Jordan is a party to seven of the 12 international conventions and protocols relating to terrorism.


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