The Jordanian General Intelligence Department has foiled a major terrorist plot which was in the planning and preliminary stages, according to the Petra news agency. The plot, by a group of 11 terrorists associated with Al Qaeda, was designed to target and carry out attacks against vital targets in Jordan including shopping centers, residential areas, diplomats and foreign nationals.
The objective of the plot, labeled as 9/11 (2) in reference to the Amman hotel bombings of 2005, was to cause chaos and anarchy and spread fear among the population, setting the stage for further operations to follow. The group had intended to take advantage of what they believed was the Intelligence “preoccupation” with other files, to carry out their plans.
The terrorist group made comprehensive preparations to carry out their crimes against selected targets. They performed surveillance and casing of these potential targets and laid plans for execution using explosives, booby-trapped cars as well as submachine guns and mortars.
The group, which was under constant surveillance at every stage by GID, experimented with explosives after procuring basic material and consulting with senior explosives’ experts from Al Qaeda in Iraq through terrorist websites.
Their objective was to create a highly destructive explosive that would cause the highest number of casualties and extensive physical damage. They had planned to bring TNT explosives and mortar shells from Syria, exploiting the ongoing crisis there.
The group was able to devise new types of explosives to be used for the first time, and planned to add TNT so as to increase their destructive power. Given what they believed to be the “success” of their experimentation with the explosive material, they made their findings available on terrorist websites for the benefit of other extremists. They subsequently started selecting operatives and potential suicide bombers to carry out these attacks.
The early plans of the group were to target diplomats from hotels and public areas followed by the bombing of two major shopping malls in order to draw the attention of the security services away from these selected targets, thus clearing the way for them to target their main objectives in Abdoun, in West Amman.
The plan was for the main attack to be carried out by suicide bombers using explosive belts and devices as well as booby-trapped cars and machine guns.
Subsequently, mortar shells would be fired at the entire neighborhood.
GID has seized machine guns and ammunition along with basic material for the manufacture of explosives. Other seized items included computers, cameras and forged documents. The case has been transferred to the Prosecutor General of the State Security Court for investigation and further legal proceedings.