Jordan warns of jihadist elements in Syria

Dec. 20, 2012 at 8:02 AM
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AMMAN, Jordan, Dec. 20 (UPI) -- Jordanian officials warned jihadist organizations are taking over the rebellion against the Syrian regime and are being supplied with advanced weaponry,

Advanced missiles financed by the Gulf states transferred to rebel groups in Syria via Turkey have fallen into the hands of fanatics in recent weeks, a report in Haaretz said Thursday. Jordan blames Turkey for allowing fanatics to accumulate strength and arms at the expense of moderate and secular rebel groups, the paper said.

Unnamed senior officials in the Jordanian government said they warned Israel and Western nations of the development and fear, with the collapse of the Syrian government, extremist elements will target other areas in the region, especially Israel and Jordan, the paper said.

The report said Jordan identified the trend about two months ago when its security personnel detained 11 Jordanian Salafists who had assembled in Syria and planned to carry out terror attacks in Jordan, the Israeli daily said.

Jordan is trying to integrate all minorities in the Syrian rebellion, including Alawites not linked to Syrian President Bashar Assad, to guarantee a balanced Syrian government in the future and avoid jihadist chaos in the country, Haaretz said.

Unconfirmed media reports in the Arab world say the Jordanian army has declared a state of emergency and issued gas masks to troops in anticipation Assad may use chemical weapons, the newspaper said, adding, Jordan maintains no country in the region can overcome Syria's chemical arsenal.

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