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IDF to Open New Investigation into Death of Jordanian Judge

IDF opens a new investigation into the March 10 killing of a Jordanian judge by Israeli soldiers at the Allenby border crossing.
By Elad Benari
First Publish: 4/1/2014, 3:43 AM

Allenby crossing
Allenby crossing
Flash 90

The IDF said Monday it would open a new investigation into the March 10 killing of a Jordanian judge by Israeli soldiers at the Allenby border crossing, AFP reported.

The probe will be carried out in coordination with Jordanian authorities, said the IDF.

"The Israeli army prosecutor's office has decided to open a new investigation into this incident," an army spokeswoman told AFP.

"An investigation was carried out immediately after the incident in the form of witnesses being questioned," the army said in a statement quoted by the news agency.

"But at the instruction of the political leadership, the military command of the Central Region has decided to open a new probe."

The shooting death of judge Raed Zeiter, who is of Palestinian Arab origin, caused an outrage in Jordan, which has a 1994 peace treaty with Israel.

IDF soldiers shot and killed Zeiter after he attacked a soldier and tried to grab his weapon.

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu later expressed regret for the shooting but stopped short of apologizing to Jordan. President Shimon Peres subsequently issued an apology to Jordan’s King Abdullah II over the incident.

Zeiter’s family, witnesses and rights groups dispute the army's account, saying he was killed during a row with the soldiers.

Following the incident, Jordanian MPs demanded the government expel the Israeli ambassador and release Jordanian soldier Ahmad Daqamseh, who shot dead seven Israeli schoolgirls in the 1990s.

They have also demanded the government recall the Jordanian ambassador to Israel.

Jordan’s Prime Minister, Abdullah Nsur, rejected the possibility that his country would cut ties with Israel over the incident, explaining that Jordan "does not see that expelling the Israeli envoy and calling the Jordanian ambassador serve the path of our martyr’s case."