Israel won’t prosecute guard in Amman embassy shooting — sources
search

Israel won’t prosecute guard in Amman embassy shooting — sources

Rebuffing Jordanian demands, diplomats say ‘no way’ Jerusalem will try security officer who killed 2 in July incident

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 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)

Israel won’t prosecute the security guard who killed two Jordanians in a scuffle in the Amman embassy last year, as had been demanded by Jordan, Israeli sources told the Reuters news agency Sunday.

Instead, a diplomatic source said, Jerusalem would study the incident and “share the results with the Jordanians.”

Another source confirmed that there was “no way” Israel would pursue criminal charges against embassy guard Ziv Moyal.

The killings last year and Israel’s hero’s welcome for Moyal led to a rift with Jordan that was only patched up last week, when Israel expressed regret over the killings and agreed to pay compensation.

The kingdom had also demanded that Israel prosecute Moyal over the deaths. Israel has maintained he acted in self-defense.

The Israeli Embassy in Amman has been unstaffed since the July 23 incident. Netanyahu signaled last week that he would soon name a new ambassador to the country.

The Reuters report came a day after Jordanian news outlets reported that Israel had paid $5 million to the families of the man and teen shot dead my Moyal, as well as the kin of a Jordanian judge killed in a separate incident in 2014.

The al-Rai newspaper said the Israeli compensation would be transferred to the families by the Jordanian government.

On Thursday, a Jordanian government spokesperson said he had received from Israel an “official memorandum” apologizing for the deaths of its citizens.

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 of the embassy, expelling the ambassador, and canceling the 1994 peace treaty with Israel. (AFP Photo/Khalil Mazraawi)

Shortly afterward, the Israeli Prime Minister’s Office put out a statement announcing that the embassy, which was closed in the wake of July’s incident, would reopen “immediately.”

The Jordanian spokesperson, Mohammad Momani, also 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, and offering financial compensation to the bereaved Jordanian families.

In its statement Thursday night, the PMO confirmed it had come to an agreement with Jordan over both incidents and said the embassy “will return to full activity immediately.”

“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, which did not address the reported apology or reparations to Jordanian bereaved families.

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.

On Friday, Netanyahu also said Israel had not apologized to the Jordanians, but had told them that it “expresses regret.” He said Israel had paid reparation money to the government but not the family of the landlord and worker killed in the scuffle. He did not say how much was paid.

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.

read more:
less
comments
more