Akunis canceled his appearance at an event in Jordan in protest of the Kingdom’s condemnation of Israel’s shooting of a Jordanian national, who committed a terror attack in Jerusalem.
Israeli Minister of Science, Technology and Space Ofir Akunis canceled his appearance at an event in Jordan on Tuesday. The event is a launch for SESAME, the first Synchrotron-light for Experimental Science and Applications in the Middle East. Akunis’ absence is a protest of the Kingdom’s condemnation of Israel’s shooting of a Jordanian national, who committed a terror attack in Jerusalem.
The terrorist, Muhammad Abdullah Salim al-Kasji, 57, on Saturday stabbed and moderately wounded an Israeli policeman at the Old City entrance of Jerusalem before he was shot dead by Israeli security forces.
Following the attack, Jordanian Minister for Media Affairs and government spokesman Mohammad Momani stated that Israel, “as the occupying power, bears responsibility for the shooting and killing of a Jordanian citizen.”
Jordan condemned as “terrible” the “crime committed against the Jordanian citizen and demanded Israel reveal the full details.”
The Prime Minister’s Office released a statement condemning the Jordanian government’s response.
“It is outrageous to hear the backing of the Jordanian government spokesman for the terrorist attack in the Old City of Jerusalem,” the statement read.
“A security video clearly shows a Jordanian tourist stabbing an Israeli policeman with a knife. It is time for Jordan to stop this double game. Just as Israel condemns terrorist attacks in Jordan, Jordan must condemn attacks in Israel,” Netanyahu demanded.
Speaking to IDF Radio on Tuesday, Akunis explained that “a country cannot accept blow after blow and remain silent.”
He asserted that “a country must express diplomatic protestation from time to time. That is the minimum that can be done,” while underscoring that his actions are not an overly drastic move.
Israel sent a lower ranking official to the inauguration ceremony.
SESAME is the first synchrotron light source, as well as the first major international scientific center facilitating international scientific research in the Middle East.
Others with observer status in the organization include Iran, Pakistan, the Palestinian Authority, Turkey, and Egypt.
By: Aryeh Savir, World Israel News