2 US military trainers killed in gunfire exchange at Jordanian airbase – army cited by media

FILE PHOTO: U.S. soldiers take part in Exercise Eager Lion at one of the Jordanian military bases, Jordan. © Muhammad Hamed
Two US military trainers have been killed in a gunfire exchange at the gate of Jordan’s military base, media reports, citing Jordanian security sources.

“There was an exchange of fire at the entrance to the base after an attempt by the trainers’ vehicle to enter the gate without heeding orders of the guards to stop,” a Jordanian military source told Reuters.

According to Al Jazeera, the base has been temporarily closed since the incident.

According to Jordanian state news agency PETRA, the incident took place at the Prince Faisal Air Base in the al-Jafr area south of Jordan’s capital of Amman.

Another US serviceman and one Jordanian officer were also injured in the incident, PETRA reports.

The US embassy in Jordan confirmed that the incident at the base had taken place, adding that it is in contact with the Jordanian authorities. “We have reports of a security incident involving American personnel and we are in contact with Jordanian officials who are giving us all the support,” the embassy’s statement said, as cited by Reuters.

Relatives of the injured Jordanian officer have gathered at the entrance to the base, while the Jordanian army sent reinforcements to the facility citing security concerns, Jordan’s Al Ghad daily reports.  Jordanian security services have launched an investigation into the incident.

Jordan has a close relationship with the US and is one its and NATO’s major allies in the Middle East. The current Jordanian king, Abdullah II, is among “the few foreign leaders that have addressed a joint session of [the US] Congress,” according to the official website of the Jordanian embassy in Washington.

Jordan has received more than $13 billion in assistance from the US since the establishment of diplomatic relations between the two countries more than six decades ago.