An audio tape purportedly from suspected al-Qaida operative Abu Musab al-Zarqawi has said his group intended to attack Jordanian intelligence but denied they planned a chemical attack.
The tape recording - broadcast on Friday by an Islamist website http://alminbar.front.ru/mosabjo.rm - accused Jordanian authorities of lying and of extracting "false" confessions from armed fighters "under torture".
Jordanian state television has aired what it said were confessions by captured armed fighters linked to al-Qaida who said they had planned chemical attacks in Jordan that could have killed thousands of people.
"Yes, the plan was to totally destroy the building of the intelligence apparatus," the voice on the tape said.
"(But) their claims of unimaginable casualties and that it was a chemical bomb that would have killed thousands of people is a pure lie ... The chemical and poisonous bomb is a fabrication by the evil Jordanian mechanism," he added.
Abu Musab al-Zarqawi is a
suspected al-Qaida operative
The tape said the bomb was made of basic substances available on the market as one of the captured armed fighters had said. He said his group did not intend to target or kill Muslims as the Jordanian authorities had claimed.
"The Jordanian intelligence lied twice ... to protect their
masters and sponsors from the Jews and Christians," he said.
The tape also listed reasons for the group's trageting of the Hashemite Kingdom. The tape alleged "Jordan supplies the American occupying forces through its air bases."
Another allegation stated Jordan was hunting down "the knights of Islam" from places like Yemen, Egypt, Chechnya and others and that its "jail is becoming the Arab Guantanamo."
The tape also alleged that the Jordanian embassy in Baghdad was "a haven for the Israeli Mossad (intelligence)".