Jordan authorities detain uncle of Tennessee shooter: lawyer
Muhammad Youssef Abdulazeez spent several months in Jordan in 2014. (AFP/File)
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An uncle of the man who killed four Marines and one sailor at two military sites in Tennessee has been in the custody of Jordanian authorities since a day after the attack, a lawyer told the Associated Press on Tuesday.
Abdel Qader al-Khatib identified himself as the legal representation for Asaad Ibrahim Abdulazeez Haj Ali, a maternal uncle of the Chattanooga attacker, Muhammad Youssef Abdulazeez. Al-Khatib told AP he had been barred from seeing his client and that family members were also prevented from visiting the detainee.
An official from the Jordanian government said Tuesday that some of Addulazeez’s relatives in Jordan were being questioned regarding his stay in the kingdom, but did not elaborate further on the investigation.
The official, speaking on the condition of anonymity, said he was sure the uncle and “other relevant people” were being questioned, but that he did not know whether he was in detention.
An anonymous source close to the family said Abdulazeez spent several months in Jordan last year under an agreement with his parents to help him get away from struggles with drug and alcohol addiction and a group of friends his relatives considered a bad influence, AP reported.
According to AP, US authorities are struggling to understand the motive behind the Tennessee attack. Investigators are describing their search as a domestic terrorism investigation, but nothing about Abdulazeez’s former dealings had caught their attention before the rampage Thursday morning.