The diplomatic standoff between Jordan and Israel continues as King Abdullah of Jordan called for Israel to put on trial an Israeli security guard on Thursday, July 27. Tensions have been high following a shooting at the Israeli Embassy in Amman (Rabiyeh area) on the evening of Sunday, July 23, which left two Jordanian nationals dead; at least one Israeli was also reportedly wounded in the incident. Israel reportedly has not allowed Jordanian authorities to question the guard, claiming that he has diplomatic immunity.
The incident inflamed tensions between the two countries and high-level talks are taking place to defuse the situation. Protests are possible in the coming days in Amman and other urban areas, particularly after evening prayers on Friday, July 28.
According to recent reports, the incident occurred when an Israeli security guard shot a local teen as he attempted to attack the guard with a screwdriver; a bystander was also shot and later succumbed to his wounds. An intense security presence, including road closures, should continue be anticipated surrounding the embassy. As of July 27, the embassy remains closed and the staff has reportedly returned to Israel.
Sunday's incident came several days after thousands of Jordanians protested in Amman to denounce Israel's decision to install metal detectors at the Jerusalem holy site known among Muslims as Haram al-Sharif and among Jews as the Temple Mount. The controversial security measure was implemented in the wake of an attack on July 14 that killed two Israeli police officers. The metal detectors were subsequently removed on July 25 following clashes between protesters and police.
All those present in Amman are advised to monitor developments to the situation, to adhere to all instructions as issued by the local authorities, and to avoid any potential demonstrations. In particular, individuals should avoid downtown Amman, the immediate vicinity of the Israeli embassy, and the centers of other towns and cities.
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