Jordan Foils Plot Against U.S., Israeli Diplomats and American Soldiers, Report Says

Despite a frosty peace with Israel, the U.S. ally has been uncompromising in fighting radical groups

Jordanian police guard Israel's embassy in Amman, January 6, 2003
REUTERS

Jordanian intelligence recently foiled a plot by two suspected militants to mount terror attacks against U.S. and Israeli diplomats alongside U.S. troops deployed at a military base in the south of the country, state-owned al Rai newspaper reported on Tuesday.

It said the suspects had planned to drive vehicles into their targets and attack them with firearms and knives. They would stand trial in Jordan's state security court, it added.

The news come as Israel is experiencing escalating violence, after security forces carried out the targeted assassination of a top Palestinian commander in the Gaza Strip, with Gaza-based militants responding with a barrage of rockets. 

>> Follow live updates of the Gaza escalation

An Islamic Jihad commander's house in Damascus was also hit overnight, in what the movement says was a coordinated attack by the "Zionist enemy."

Militants from Islamic State and other radical jihadist groups have long targeted the U.S.-allied kingdom and dozens of militants are currently serving lengthy prison terms.

King Abdullah, a Middle East ally of Western powers against Islamist militancy, has been among the most vocal leaders in the region in warning of threats posed by radical groups.

Several incidents over the past few years have jolted the Arab kingdom, which has been comparatively unscathed by the uprisings, civil wars and Islamist militancy that have swept the Middle East since 2011.

Jordan said last year it had foiled an Islamic State plot that included plans for a series of attacks on security installations, shopping malls and moderate religious figures. It arrested the suspects.

Even though hostilities between Israel and Jordan came to an end more than 25 years, but have until now found little reason to celebrate, with the two neighbors finding it hard to make headway towards a comprehensive peace.