Showdown between Israeli, Jordanian lawmakers at border averted

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A potentially violent showdown between an Israeli and Jordanian parliamentarian at a border crossing on Wednesday was averted after the office of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Jordanian police intervened.

Jordanian lawmaker Yahya Al-Saud, who has previously scuffled with peers in Jordan’s parliament, challenged rabble-rousing Israeli politician, Oren Hazan, a member of Netanyahu’s Likud party, to a brawl at the border after Hazan criticised Jordan.

Hazan accepted the challenge to meet at 10:00 a.m. at the Allenby Bridge border crossing, 36 km east of Amman, saying he would arrive “for a face-to-face conversation.”

“I have an offer he can’t refuse,” Hazan said on Twitter.

As the two made their way to the border, Al-Saud broadcasted on a Facebook Live video by Jordanian outlet Jfra News.

“Jordan has dignity and we either live in dignity or we die,” Al-Saud said.

Shortly before the showdown, Yoav Horowitz, Netanyahu’s chief of staff, called Hazen and told him not to go to the Allenby crossing, the prime minister’s office said in a statement.

According to the Facebook Live video Jordanian police also did not let Al-Saud enter the crossing.

The incident came amid increasingly high tensions between Jordan and Israel over the killing of two Jordanians, an attacker and bystander, by an Israeli embassy security guard in July.

The two countries were also embattled over Israeli actions at a sacred shrine in Jerusalem, holy to both Jews and Muslims.

(dpa/NAN)


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