Israeli FM calls for indictment of Jordanian lawmaker over alleged gun smuggling

Israel’s foreign minister on Monday called for the indictment and punishment of a Jordanian parliament member, following the latter’s arrest in Israel for allegedly attempting to smuggle guns into Israel.

Israeli Foreign Minister Eli Cohen told the Hebrew-language Ynet news site that Israeli authorities were still investigating the incident, in which the Jordanian lawmaker Imad Al-Adwan is accused of smuggling over 200 guns and gold into the Israeli-occupied West Bank.

“This is a very serious incident,” Cohen said. “The basic demand is of course that he is brought to justice and will pay a price.”

Cohen said the Jordanian government was not responsible for the incident. “I don’t want to assign guilt to the entire government or the entire parliament,” he said, adding that the incident was rather “an irresponsible, criminal act.”

He added that Israeli security officials are in contact with Jordan about returning the lawmaker home but stressed that a final decision on the case would be made only after the investigation is concluded.

According to the Jordanian Ammon News Agency, Al-Adwan was arrested on Saturday at the Allenby Bridge, which is controlled by Israel and serves as a crossing point between Jordan and the West Bank.

Israel and Jordan have had diplomatic relations since signing a peace treaty in 1994, although recent tensions have arisen, mainly over Israeli police raids in the flashpoint Al-Aqsa Mosque compound in East Jerusalem. ■

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