Jordanian army officer vows to kill anyone who comes near border
A senior officer in the Jordanian army Saturday warned that any individual who approaches the country’s frontier would be killed, saying that the rules of engagement "have changed."
Commander of the eastern region Brig. Gen. Naji al-Manasir vowed to kill "anyone who dares to approach the Jordanian border," a week after a Jordanian army officer was killed and three army personnel were wounded when drug smugglers trying to infiltrate the country from Syria fired at an army outpost along the border.
In a statement to local Al-Mamlaka TV, Al-Manasir stressed the need to carry out pre-emptive strikes against smugglers in their den and prevent them from entering Jordanian territory.
"We are able to reach them wherever they are. The no mans land is a buffer zone and devoid of forces from both sides [Jordan and Syria]… and according to the rules of engagement, it is strictly forbidden for any living thing to move within the no man’s land," he said.
For his part, Chairman of Joint Chiefs of Staff Maj. Gen Yousef al-Hunaiti affirmed that the Jordanian army had all capabilities available to deal with and confront infiltration attempts and smuggling operations, in a manner that “preserves the security and stability of border areas.”
Last Monday, al-Hunaiti called for changes in the rules of engagement "to pursue all elements that seek to tamper with national security."
Jordanian officials have voiced increasing alarm at a spike in attempted drug smuggling from Syria over the past year, including large quantities found hidden in Syrian trucks passing through its main border crossing to the Gulf region.
Last year the Jordanian army said it shot down a drone flying a large quantity of drugs across the border.