Israel has detained a Jordanian member of parliament in a case related to the alleged smuggling of arms and gold into the occupied West Bank, Jordan’s foreign ministry said.
Imad al-Adwan, a member of Jordan’s parliament who had crossed a main border crossing along the Jordan River earlier on Sunday by car, was being held and interrogated by Israeli authorities, Sinan Majali, a Jordanian foreign ministry spokesperson, said in a statement to state media on Sunday.
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“The ministry and all relevant agencies in the kingdom are working to ascertain the details of this issue and address it as quickly as possible,” Majali said.
Al-Adwan had been arrested “for interrogation in a case concerning alleged smuggling of quantities of weapons and gold”, he said.
A spokesperson for Israel’s foreign ministry declined to comment on reports of the arrest.
Al-Adwan, 35, is a member of the Jordanian parliament’s Palestine Committee.
Israeli media reported that he was arrested at the King Hussein Bridge (Allenby) border crossing in the occupied West Bank. There has been no official comment from Israeli authorities on al-Adwan’s arrest.
Prominent Jordanian legislator Khalil Atiya, who is known for his vocal opposition to Israel and has led campaigns to repeal the country’s peace treaty with Israel, said the government would be held responsible if it failed to act quickly.
“There should be no room left for the enemy to harm the dignity of Jordanians by detaining and jailing a member of the parliament,” Atiya said.
Israel enjoys close security ties with Jordan, the Arab neighbour it shares its longest stretch of border with, but political relations have soured in recent years over Israel’s stance on the right of Palestinians to a state.
Many of the kingdom’s citizens are of Palestinian origin.