Tension Between Israel and Jordan Grows; Jordanians Fire on Jerusalem

Tension between Israel and Jordan continued to grow today after Jordanian troops stationed near the border opened fire on the Musrara Quarter of Jerusalem killing a 14-year-old Israeli girl and a Christian carpenter working at the Notre Dame Monastery, and wounding two nuns at that building. Also wounded by the Jordanian fire was an Israeli woman and a second Israeli girl. The dead girl was identified as Yafan Benyamina.

Today’s shooting by the Jordanians at Jerusalem’s densely populated Musrara Quarter followed a weekend of incidents along the Jordan-Israel border precipitated by last week’s bombings of Israeli settlements by Jordanian-based Arab terrorists which were followed by Israeli retaliatory warning strikes at Arab terrorist training bases in Jordan. The Israeli units struck at a Fatan terrorist training center and supply base at Shuna, on the east bank of the Jordan River south of the Sea of Galilee and at limited targets in the villages of Jenin and Kalkilya on the Jordanian side of the border.

Following today’s shooting by Jordanian units, ambulances removed the Israeli civilian casualties to hospitals while police cordoned off the danger area around the Notre Dame Monastery and the Musrara Quarter. An Israeli spokesman denied a Jordanian claim that Israelis were the first to open fire in Jerusalem and said that the claim had been made to justify the unprovoked attack on the Jerusalem urban area.

The warning action by the Israeli units earlier in the weekend was aimed at areas along the Jordanian side of the border which have served as bases of activity for the Fatah Arab terrorist group of the “Palestine Liberation movement” founded about six months age and composed mainly of former Palestinians familiar with Israel and with relatives among Israel’s Arab population. There were no Israeli casualties during the raids, but on the way back to the base in Israel, the accidental detonation of an explosive carried by one member of the Israeli unit, injured seven Israelis.

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