One tourist among 10 dead in Jordan attacks

One tourist among 10 dead in Jordan attacks

One tourist among 10 dead in Jordan attacks

AP photo

Gunmen killed 10 people including a Canadian tourist and police officers on Dec. 18 in southern Jordan, before security forces killed four attackers in a siege lasting several hours.
The shootings took place in Karak, a tourist destination known for one of the biggest Crusader castles in the region, around 120 kilometers (70 miles) south of the capital Amman.

Jordan’s general security department said seven policemen, a female Canadian tourist and two Jordanian civilians were killed in a series of shootings.

It said that 27 others, including policemen and civilians, were wounded.

Four attackers who had taken refuge in the castle were killed later Dec. 18 by security forces who had besieged them amid exchanges fire lasting several hours, a security source said.

The Canadian Foreign Ministry confirmed that one of its nationals had been killed in the attack and another injured in “the heinous attack.” 

Canadian officials in Amman are “actively working with local authorities to gather additional information and are providing consular assistance to Canadians at this difficult time,” a Foreign Ministry official said.

“The government of Canada stands ready to assist Jordan in bringing the perpetrators of this attack to justice,” a statement added.

Earlier, the Jordanian prime minister said 10 gunmen were holed up in the fortress, while the general security department spoke of “five or six gunmen” who were thought to be involved in the shootings.

The first attack took place early in the afternoon when a police patrol went to check on a house fire in Karak, the department said in a statement carried by the official Petra news agency.

“As soon as they reached the area, unknown gunmen who were inside the house opened fire on the patrol, wounding a policeman, and then fled by car,” the statement said.

Gunmen later fired on another patrol while more shots rang out from inside the Crusader castle, aimed at the Karak police station and “wounding several policemen and passersby,” it said.

“Police and security forces have surrounded the castle and its vicinity and launched an operation to hunt down the gunmen.”