Israel paying families of slain Jordanians $5m in reparations — report
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Israel paying families of slain Jordanians $5m in reparations — report

Kingdom says Jerusalem agreed to pay compensation over deaths of three people, in order to end diplomatic standoff

Jordanian protesters wave national flags and chant slogans during a demonstration near the Israeli embassy in the capital Amman on July 28, 2017, calling for the shutting down the of the embassy, expelling the ambassador, and canceling the 1994 peace treaty with Israel. (AFP PHOTO / KHALIL MAZRAAWI)
Jordanian protesters wave national flags and chant slogans during a demonstration near the Israeli embassy in the capital Amman on July 28, 2017, calling for the shutting down the of the embassy, expelling the ambassador, and canceling the 1994 peace treaty with Israel. (AFP PHOTO / KHALIL MAZRAAWI)

Israel is paying $5 million in compensation to the families of two people shot dead by an Israeli embassy guard last year, as well as a Jordanian judge killed in a 2014 incident, diplomats in Jordan told the al-Rai newspaper Saturday.

Israeli officials have previously said an undisclosed sum would be paid to the Jordanian government and not to the families. The paper reported that the sum will be transferred by Jordan’s leaders to the families.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu meets with security guard Ziv Moyal (R) and Israel’s Ambassador to Jordan Einat Schlein (L), at the Prime Minister’s Office in Jerusalem on July 25, 2017. (Haim Zach/GPO)

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on Friday that Israel had paid reparation money to the Jordanian government, but not to the family of the landlord and worker killed in the embassy incident. He did not say how much was paid. He said bilateral relations were now back on track.

The Prime Minister’s Office confirmed Thursday it had come to an agreement with Jordan over the deaths of two Jordanians in the shooting incident at the Israeli Embassy in Amman in July, and the killing of a Jordanian judge in a separate incident in 2014.

It said the the embassy, which was closed in the wake of July’s incident, will reopen “immediately.”

Guard Ziv Moyal shot the two Jordanians dead after one of them allegedly attacked him, sparking a diplomatic crisis between Jerusalem and Amman, and prompting all diplomatic staff, including Ambassador Einat Schlein, to return to Israel.

A Jordanian government spokesperson said Israel had agreed to comply with all the kingdom’s preconditions for resuming regular diplomatic relations between the two sides. Those included, he said, bringing legal action against the Israeli security guard accused of killing the two Jordanians in the embassy compound, and offering financial compensation to all three bereaved Jordanian families.

Diverging from that statement, the PMO said Israeli authorities would come to a decision “in the coming weeks” as to whether the guard, Moyal, will stand trial over the shooting.

“Israel attaches great importance to its strategic relations with Jordan, and the two countries will act to advance their cooperation and to strengthen the peace treaty between them,” the PMO said in its statement.

In the immediate aftermath of the incident, Jordan briefly refused to allow Moyal to return to Israel or to acknowledge his diplomatic immunity. But a day later, Moyal and the rest of the embassy staff were allowed to return to Israel.

Netanyahu was criticized for his handling of the incident after his office released footage of him meeting and praising Moyal before either country’s investigators had determined what had happened during the incident.

Alexander Fullbright and Dov Lieber contributed to this report.

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