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Jordan: Death Sentence, Life Imprisonment in Rukban Camp’s Case

Jordan: Death Sentence, Life Imprisonment in Rukban Camp’s Case

Tuesday, 5 December, 2017 - 13:15
Five Syrians, accused of facilitating the Rukban bombings in June 2016, react during their trial at the State Security Court in Amman, Jordan December 4, 2017. Reuters

A state security court in Jordan on Monday sentenced one Syrian militant to death for having ties to the June 2016 ISIS suicide attack on Rukban camp and handed life sentences to three others for their role in a suicide bombing attack on a Jordanian military border post that killed seven guards in 2016.

The main defendant was sentenced to death by hanging. He is one of five Syrian suspects who have been detained since February 2017, accused of carrying out "terrorist attacks" and possessing explosive materials.

Three others were sentenced to life in prison, and the remaining suspect was sentenced to two years in prison.

Military judge Colonel Mohammad al-Afif said the men were involved in helping ISIS stage the suicide bombing that shook the country in June last year.

Afif said the four had provided photos and intelligence about the Jordanian military post to an ISIS leader in the former de facto capital of the militants, Raqqa in Syria.

The military outpost was located a few hundred meters away from Rukban camp in a no-man’s land where thousands of Syrian refugees were stranded and near where the frontiers of Iraq, Syria and Jordan meet.

The court found the four, who were residents of the camp, guilty of “abetting terrorist acts that led to the death of human beings” and other charges of committing “terrorist acts using automatic weapons.”

A fifth defendant was acquitted. They had all pleaded not guilty when the trial began last March.

Officials said at the time the suicide bomber drove an explosive-laden car at full speed from behind a berm and evaded troops to reach the Jordanian post and detonate his car.

The blast, for which ISIS claimed responsibility a few days later, also left 15 soldiers wounded, officials said.

The area was later declared a closed military zone and the incident disrupted aid to tens of thousands of Syrian refugees.

“Such heinous terrorist acts will only make us more determined to carry on with our fight against terrorism and its groups who plotted in the dark against the men who protect the country and its borders,” Jordan’s King Abdullah II noted at the time.

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