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Jordanians say Karak attack only makes them stronger in face of terrorism

‘Karak residents came out in support of security personnel during operation’

By Dana Al Emam - Dec 19,2016 - Last updated at Dec 19,2016

Students at the Princess Sumaya University for Technology in Amman perform prayers for the absent on campus on Monday (Petra photo)

AMMAN — As the security personnel who were killed in the terrorist attack were laid to rest on Monday, Jordanians said the incident will only make them stand firmer against terrorism.

Ten people, including four police officers and three gendarmes, were killed on Sunday in the attack in the southern governorate of Karak that resulted in killing four terrorists.

Two civilians and a Canadian national were killed, while 34 other civilians and police officers were injured when the four gunmen stormed the southern city and fired at security and civilians before heading to Karak Castle, an official source said Sunday.

Commenting on the attack on her official Twitter account, Her Majesty Queen Rania prayed for the souls of the those killed in the attack and for Jordan’s security.

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs and Expatriates Nasser Judeh tweeted: “Tragic day today. #Jordan remains resilient and tough. God rest the souls of our fallen in eternal peace. #oasis_of_stability”.

The incident has sparked a wave of expressions of solidarity among Jordanians, who highlighted citizens as “strong supporters” of security forces.   

Karak resident Hassan Mubaydeen, who was present at the location of the incident, said residents had a central role in assisting police officers and gendarmes throughout the operation.

He told The Jordan Times that Karak residents helped police officers and gendarmes in shooting terrorists, evacuating those who were trapped in the castle and those injured, as well as blocking roads and checking the identities of passersby.

Commenting on the general atmosphere in Karak on Monday, he said people are “extremely” sad over the loss of civilians and police officers, who were doing nothing but their jobs.

Fatimah Humeidan, a Jerash resident and owner of a home business, said that such incidents unify Jordanians’ thoughts and feelings, adding that she, alongside her family, was anxious to know what was going on and kept checking the news until after midnight. 

“I feel with the mothers and families of the dead officers and civilians, and I hope for the recovery of the injured,” she told The Jordan Times over the phone.

Social media users hailed the bravery and loyalty of those who have given their lives to protect the Kingdom against attackers.

“There cannot be any sacrifice greater than that what these seven officers have done,” posted Facebook user Marwan Husseini.

Meanwhile, Khaldoun Raji criticised the lack of updated information on official national media channels during the operation, adding that it is a “shame” to look for local news on regional channels or through social media outlets, a rich soil for inaccurate news.

Commenting on the death of the Canadian national in the shooting, Columnist and researcher Ibrahim Gharaibeh posted: “It should mean a lot to us when Linda... [Vatcher], a Canadian teacher, came to visit Jordan and was killed in Karak Castle”.

Yaman Khtoom (@yaman-khtoum) tweeted: “… extremists have no place in our beloved Jordan”.

Raid Hjooj (@RaidHjooj) tweeted that the terrorist attack in Karak has reminded Jordanians of previous attacks that took place earlier this year in Irbid, Rakban and Ain Al Basha.

Students and staff at several universities around Jordan on Monday performed “prayers for the absent”, communal funeral prayers originally performed by Muslims for those who die in foreign lands and do not receive a proper burial. 

 

In an act of solidarity, many Jordanians wore flipped-over keffiyeh (traditional headdresses) to express mourning. 

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