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Israel Bows to Jordanian Demand Not to Return Ambassador to Amman

Anxious to return relations with Jordan to where they were before being derailed by a shooting incident in which two Jordanians were killed by an Israeli security guard, Israel has bowed to one of Jordan’s key demands: that its ambassador posted in Amman at the time not be returned to her diplomatic posting in the Jordanian capital. This past July, a Jordanian national working with carpenters in the Israeli diplomatic compound reportedly attacked a security guard with a screwdriver. The guard drew his weapon and shot and killed the assailant. But in addition to the attacker, the building’s landlord was also killed by a stray bullet. The incident set off angry protests and demands to arrest the guard, but the Israelis, including the ambassador and the guard who fired his weapon, managed to escape to Israel before they could be apprehended. The Jordanians immediately demanded that the guard be arrested and put on trial for murder and were angry when their pleas were ignored in Jerusalem. But the angst level in Amman soared when Prime Minister Netanyahu released a photo of the ambassador and the guard being received by the PM in his office. Local reports now reveal plans to replace the ambassador, express regret for the incident and pay compensation to the family of the landlord. Nevertheless, it remains unclear whether the Israeli gestures will be enough to get past the July incident. Amman remains adamant that the Israelis much put the guard on trial – an act that doesn’t appear to be even a possibility. The kingdom also wants Israel to release Jordanians being held in Israeli jails.