Jordan releases new details on bombings as king calls for joint Arab action against terror
A female who failed to blow herself up in Wednesday's triple suicide bombing in Amman is detained, Jordan's Deputy Prime Minister Marwan al-Muasher revealed on Sunday. "I just heard from our intelligence services that there is a fourth bomber, a woman, who failed to blow herself up and she's in custody," he told a group of media representatives in the Jordanian capital.
Al-Muasher added the woman would appear tonight on Jordanian television to explain details of the operation. He also showed pictures of the explosives belt worn by her. It should be noted that the woman's husband blew himself up in Amman's Radisson SAS hotel.
Al-Muasher identified the woman as Sajida Mubarak al-Rishawi and said she was the sister of a key aide to Abu Musab al-Zarqawi. She entered Jordan with a forged passport in the name of Sajida Abdul Qader Lateef. Her husband was identified as Ali Hussein Ali al-Shamari, from Anbar province in Iraq. The woman is the sister of Mubarak Atrous al-Rishawi, al-Zarqawi's right-hand man in Anbar who was killed by U.S. forces in Fallujah, Al-Muasher conveyed.
Over the weekend, al Qaeda in Iraq, led by Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, claimed responsibility for the blasts, which killed 57 people. The network's statement said that a married couple and two other men -- all Iraqis -- had carried out the bombing attacks. On Saturday, al-Muasher confirmed the bombers were three males, but dismissed speculation that a woman had been among them. Al-Muasher identified the other two Iraqi bombers as Rawad Jassem Mohammed Abed, 23; and Safa Mohammed Ali, 23.
According to the AP, al-Muasher said the four crossed into Jordan from Iraq by car on Nov. 4, five days before the attacks, and rented a furnished apartment in the middle-class Tlaa' Ali suburb in western Amman.
The four left their apartment on the day of the attacks and took taxis to their targets, the Radisson SAS, Grand Hyatt and Days Inn hotels. The bombers used the powerful explosive RDX and small ball metals to kill as many people as possible, Muasher said. Investigations showed that no Jordanians were directly involved in the attacks, but several Jordanian followers of al-Zarqawi have been arrested, the deputy premier added.
Meanwhile, Jordan's King Abdullah II on Sunday urged chiefs of Arab police to set up a unified Arab mechanism to study means of terrorist organizations in spreading extremism thoughts. In a speech that was delivered by Prime Minister Adnan Badran on behalf of the King, he stressed the need of fighting extremism thoughts and building a community culture that stands against them.
According to the king, the only way to defeat terrorism is through the coordination among all security apparatuses and governments, affirming that those terrorists have no tie with Islam but have a certain point of view against the world aims at creating a controversy between Muslims and Christians and others to blow up clashes among cultures. "The conflict is not between Jordan and Al Zarqawi, but between Al Zarqawi and Bin Laden in one hand and the ideology of the majority of Muslims in the other," King said, adding "those have an irrational way to see the world covered by religion but they have no relation with Islam as the majority of Muslims are not related to them."