Jordan condemns bombing attack on Baghdad embassy: More than 10 people killed, most of them Iraqis
A huge blast thought to have been a car bomb rocked the Jordanian Embassy in Baghdad Thursday morning, and at least 12 people were killed and 57 wounded. Many of the injured were in serious condition, reports said. According to hospital sources in Baghdad, the Jordanian Consul, Karim Shoshan was also among the injured.
Paramedics at the scene said 12 bodies had been removed from the tangle of wreckage outside the walled embassy compound. The dead included an Iraqi child, a woman, two men, an Iraqi policeman and two Jordanians.
The shells of three burned-out cars sat outside the wall of the embassy compound at the west edge of the Iraqi capital. Atop the cars was what appeared to be the chassis of a minibus.
According to initial reports, the cause of the blast was an RPG (rocket propelled grenade) missile fired on the building. Later, it was believed the bomb have been planted in the minibus that was parking outside the walled embassy compound and detonated remotely.
Hours after the attack, there were still conflicting reports about the nature of the blast. Sources told Al Bawaba about an unknown person throwing a grenade that hit the embassy fence, killing and injuring Iraqi passer bys. Abu Dhabi TV, on the other hand, has reported about a booby trapped Nissan Landcruiser exploding in front of the embassy.
A Sudanese man - working as a cleaner at the embassy - told the AP that those inside [the embassy] heard the explosion. He added that many of them suffered minor injuries from the shock of the blast - including himself.
It should be noted that shortly after the bombing, young Iraqis stormed to the embassy gate and started destroying images of Jordanian King Abdullah II and his late father, King Hussein, The AP reported.
U.S. troops and Iraqi police chased the protesting Iraqis away after a few minutes. An American tank was parked at the main gate of the embassy compound. Soldiers in armored vehicles and Humvees cordoned off the area around the embassy.
A Jordanian ministry source described to Al Bawaba the blast as a “horrific and cowardly act”. The source confirmed several embassy staff suffered minor injuries due to the broken glass that shattered everywhere. However, when asked whether this could be in retaliation to the recent permission given to the daughter’s of Saddam Hussein to reside in Jordan, the source said it was too early to identify who has been behind this action and what their motives were.
“What has happened in front of the Jordanian embassy in Baghdad is nothing but an horrific and cowardly act, particularly in view of the large number of casualties amongst innocent Iraqis,” Jordan’s Foreign Ministry spokesman, Bishr al Khasawneh, told Al Bawaba.
As far as the embassy staff is concerned, Khasawneh confirmed that no one was seriously hurt in the blast; however some have sustained minor injuries due to the broken glass. “These actions will not deter us from carrying out our duties in support of our Iraqi brethren. Jordan will continue fighting against terror whether these terrorists target Jordan or others,” said Khasawneh.(Albawaba.com)