The leaders of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations on Tuesday called on Jordan to extradite wanted terrorist Ahlam Tamimi to the US.
"Ahead of King Abdullah’s Congressional testimony tomorrow, we respectfully renew our call for the Kingdom of Jordan to extradite Ahlam Tamimi, the terrorist behind the 2001 Sbarro bombing in Jerusalem that murdered 15 innocent people, including two American citizens,” said Arthur Stark, Chairman, William Daroff, CEO, and Malcolm Hoenlein, Vice Chair of the Conference of Presidents.
“Jordan is a key ally of the United States in the Middle East, where it plays a pivotal role in maintaining stability in the region. Nonetheless, it is unacceptable to harbor a terrorist with American blood on her hands. The attempts by the US to extradite Tamimi so that she can stand trial for her crimes in an American court have consistently been met by Jordanian refusals, in violation of the longstanding extradition treaty between our two countries,” they added.
“We are hopeful that an agreement will be reached so that justice will prevail for the victims of Tamimi."
Tamimi, 39, was a college student at Birzeit University in 2001, when she was brought into a Hamas terror cell planning a bombing attack on central Jerusalem.
In August of 2001, Tamimi planned and aided in a suicide bombing targeting the Sbarro pizzeria in downtown Jerusalem which killed 15 people, including seven children and a pregnant woman.
An additional 130 people were injured in the bombing. Two of the victims killed in the Sbarro bombing attack were American citizens, prompting the FBI to add Tamimi to its list of top wanted terrorists following her release.
Tamimi was captured and sentenced to 16 consecutive life sentences after being found guilty but in 2011 was released as part of the deal which secured the release of IDF soldier Gilad Shalit, who had been taken captive by Hamas and held in the Gaza Strip. She subsequently moved to Jordan.
According to a report by The Associated Press on Tuesday, the Trump administration’s nominee to serve as ambassador to Jordan, Henry Wooster, confirmed that US aid to Jordan could be withheld as leverage to pressure the Hashemite kingdom into extraditing Tamimi.
Tamimi has in the past expressed pride in her role in the Sbarro attack, telling a Jordanian interviewer, “I dedicated myself to the path of jihad for the sake of Allah… I would do it again.”
In 2012, Hamas decided to show its pride in Tamimi by giving her a talk show focusing on terrorists imprisoned in Israel.