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US Mulls Withholding Aid to Jordan to Force Palestinian Terrorist’s Extradition

The United States is reportedly considering withholding aid to its close Middle East ally Jordan with a view to forcing the extradition of a Palestinian terrorist convicted in Israel for her role in the 2001 suicide bombing of a Jerusalem pizzeria that killed 15 people, including two American citizens. According to media, the Trump Administration is weighing “all options” to induce Amman to extradite to the US Ahlam Aref Ahmad Al-Tamimi, who is on the FBI’s list of “most wanted terrorists” and has been charged with conspiring to use a weapon of mass destruction against Americans. Tamimi, who drove the Palestinian attacker to the Sbarro restaurant, was freed by Israel in a 2011 prisoner exchange deal with Hamas. She was thereafter sent to Jordan, where she assumed a high profile without ever expressing remorse for her involvement in the murders. The threat by Washington comes on the backdrop of Jordanian King Abdullah’s vehement opposition to the White House’s Israeli-Palestinian peace plan. He has gone so far as to threaten to cancel his country’s landmark 1994 peace treaty with the Jewish state if Jerusalem moves forward with annexing parts of the West Bank.