Jordan Leaks Name of Israeli Guard As Diplomatic Crisis Escalates

jordan security
AP/Ben Curtis

TEL AVIV — Jordanian media has increased its criticism of Israel over a recent shooting incident at the Israeli embassy in Amman in which a young Jordanian who stabbed an embassy guard was shot and killed.

Jordanian news outlets last week revealed the identity of the Israeli security guard as Ziv Moyal, 28, information that was kept secret until the reports. The revelation forced the Israeli Foreign Ministry to confirm that the same individual was indeed an Israeli security guard. Moyal’s family in southern Israel fled their home and say they now fear for their safety.

The online version of the Jordanian newspaper Alghad, which revealed the guard’s identity in a leak citing anonymous Jordanian authorities, used the term “criminal” to refer to the Israeli. The newspaper noted that the guard received his diplomatic certificate in August of last year.

In an effort to keep up with events, Jordanian news website Ammon published the Israeli embassy’s request to issue a diplomatic permit to Moyalin in May of last year. Local analysts considered the revelation of the guard’s identity a below the belt attack on Israel, and a response to Moyal’s official reception from Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu upon returning home.

The tone of some coverage was aggressive. Columnist Bassam al-Badarin wrote a furious piece in the newspaper al-Quds headlined, “The Curse of the Building Rented by the Israelis… a New Headache in Jordan.”

The author called the shooting a “murder” committed on Jordanian land against Jordanians without any reasonable security motive despite the guard saying that he was attacked and was acting in self-defense. Al-Badarin also wrote that the Israeli embassy building is a headache for Jordanian authorities due to the hundreds of attempts to attack it during various anti-Israel protests.

As part of the anti-Israel atmosphere in Jordan over the incident, a video went viral showing a man criticizing the Jordanian government for allowing the Israeli guard to leave the kingdom after what the man called the murder of a Jordanian citizen.

“This is how cheap the lives of the Jordanians are,” said the man.

Emotions are still running high on social media, though Jordanian Twitter users have been restrained, most likely for fear of the authorities.

Jordanian Twitter user Mustafa Salim cited, “The comparison between Ahmad Daqamseh to the guard at the Israeli embassy.” Daqamseh was a Jordanian soldier who murdered seven Israeli students in 1997 in the border area between Israel and Jordan and was sentenced to 20 years in prison.

Najwa Daher, a Lebanese Twitter user, criticized the behavior of the Jordanians and wasn’t impressed by their raised tone toward Israel: “Redefining the term innocence after he (the security guard) was in their hands the Jordanians decide to prosecute the embassy guard in his absence.”

The Shia Iraqi station Al Anwar wrote on its Twitter account, “Jordanian members of parliament want to close the Israeli embassy and expel the ambassador. … The king has proved himself to be more of a friend to Israel than a king to the Jordanians.”


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