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Jordanians protest judge’s killing near Israeli embassy

By Muath Freij - Mar 15,2014 - Last updated at Mar 15,2014

AMMAN –– Around 1,000 Jordanians gathered outside the Kalouti Mosque near the Israeli embassy in Amman on Friday to protest the killing of Jordanian Judge Raed Zuaiter. 

After the Friday prayer, representatives of several groups, including the Muslim Brotherhood and the Jordanian Democratic Popular Unity Party, waved Jordanian and Palestinian flags and chanted slogans denouncing Zuaiter’s murder.

Some protesters tried to reach the Israeli embassy but were prevented from doing so by Gendarmerie forces. 

Rida Suwatia, a member of the Jordanian Democratic Popular Unity Party, said if the government cannot avenge the judge’s death, it can at least close down Israel’s diplomatic mission and release  Jordanian soldier Ahmad Daqamseh, who is serving a life sentence for shooting seven Israeli schoolgirls in 1997. 

Jordan summoned the Israeli charge d’affaires in Amman last week to protest the shooting of Zuaiter by Israeli soldiers and ask for an immediate investigation into the incident.

Zuaiter, a judge at the Amman Court of First Instance, was killed at the King Hussein (Allenby) Bridge over Jordan River last Monday. In reaction to the incident, the government asked to take part in the investigation that is yet to be announced. Israel agreed to the request. 

Hamza Jibrin, another demonstrator who participated in Friday’s protest, criticised Arabs because they are not united despite thousands of people being killed every day. 

“Arabs are only fighting each other. Instead of protecting those who are being attacked, they protect the ones who occupied our land,” the university student said.   

He added that demonstrations are the least that Arabs citizens can do to express their support for fellow Arabs living under occupation and oppression. 

“What we really want is to send a message to the whole world in a peaceful manner. We do not want to spread chaos,” Jibrain added.  

He noted that if the authorities expel the Israeli ambassador from the country and recall Jordan’s ambassador from Tel Aviv, Jordanians will be proud of their government. 

Amir Nawaisah, another protester, said Jordanian blood should not be cheap. 

“Our main issue is the Palestinian cause and how to free Palestinian land. We also want to send a message that we do not want any kind of ties with the Zionist enemy,” he told The Jordan Times.  

Describing Daqamseh as a “hero”, Nawaisah said he was treated as a war criminal in the Kingdom.

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