Car bomb kills two in Jordan

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The Independent Online

A car bomb exploded in the Jordanian capital this morning, killing two people, in what was described as a warning to the country's security apparatus.

The car belonged to the wife of a high-ranking member of the government's Anti-Terrorism Unit, a senior security official said.

"This appears to be a message to the Jordanian security apparatus at this crucial time," a senior security official said, referring to Jordan's support for the US-led campaign against international terrorism.

The victims were walking past the car when it exploded, a police officer on the scene said. One was an Egyptian laborer, the other an Iraqi citizen.

There were no other casualties because the bomb exploded at 7.30am, local time, the police officer said, speaking on condition of anonymity.

The bomb was set in a Toyota car in the commercial district of Jebel Amman, the police officer said.

The car belonged to Yasmin Burjak, the wife of Lt. Col. Ali Burjak of the Anti-Terrorism Unit, and was parked "near their house," the security official said, speaking on condition of anonymity. He declined to say how far away the house was.

Burjak played a prominent role in the investigation that led to the trial of 28 men charged with conspiracy to carry out terror attacks on US and Israeli targets in Jordan during the millennium celebrations.

The bomb was detonated by a timing device, the security official added.

A witness said the Toyota was destroyed and six other cars were damaged. The witness also spoke on condition of anonymity.

Car-bombings are rare in Jordan, a quiet country with a low rate of crime. The last such explosions took place in 1997 and were blamed on a Muslim militant group.