Jordanian Police Officer Kills Americans in Shooting; Motive Unknown

Americans were killed in the Middle East in Monday's shooting. Illustrative.

Americans were killed in the Middle East in Monday’s shooting. Illustrative.

In the shadow of the likely terrorist bombing of an airliner over Egypt, a shooting rampage killed multiple Americans and others in Jordan at a training facility used to train Palestinian security forces. The Petra News Agency reported that the attack was done by a Jordanian policeman, according to Jordanian government spokesman Mohammad Momani. However, the spokesman would only say that they are investigating the motive for the shooting without making any estimates.

The Americans also held back from terming the incident a terror attack just yet. “The investigation is on-going and it is premature to speculate on motive at this point,” a statement posted to the website of the US Embassy to Jordan said. US spokesman John Kirby, in comments released by the State Department, said they are “working closely” with Jordan on the investigation.

The Washington Post’s report noted that the incident took place on the ten-year anniversary of a series of Al-Qaeda hotel bombings in Jordan’s capital. Those blasts killed 60 people. The report noted it was unclear if Monday’s attack was linked in any way to the anniversary.

Kirby, in his comments, said the facility where the shooting took place is Jordanian owned. He said that Americans killed in the attack were private contractors acting as “trainer/monitors” for a program that is “predominantly arranged for Palestinian security forces, to teach them basic police and security skills.”

US President Barack Obama said the incident is “something we’re paying close attention to” while offering his condolences to the families of the dead in comments released by the White House. In the same statement, Israeli President Benjamin Netanyahu, who is visiting the US this week, gave his condolences and support.

“We are with you,” said Netanayhu. “We’re with each other in more ways than one.”

(By Joshua Spurlock,, November 9, 2015)

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