PRESSURE is mounting on Jordan to extradite convicted terrorist Ahlam Tamimi, who killed 15-year-old Australian Malki Roth and 14 others.
Tamimi orchestrated a suicide bombing in Jerusalem in 2001 and should have spent the rest of her life in an Israeli prison.
But in 2011 she was released as part of the Hamas prisoner-exchange deal that saw the release of Israeli hostage Gilad Shalit.
Roth’s father Arnold however was not willing to accept that his daughter’s killer was free and demanded justice for Malki and the other victims. He contacted the FBI because Malki was an American citizen and, last month, Tamimi was the 29th person added to the FBI’s Most Wanted Terrorist list.
The United States immediately sought Tamimi’s extradition from Jordan, where she now lives, for charges of “conspiring to use a weapon of mass destruction outside of the US against US nationals”.
It took Jordan less than a week to block the extradition process.
According to Al Jazeera, the Jordanian court found that the 1995 extradition agreement between the two countries was never formally ratified by the Jordanian parliament.
“Extradition requests sent by foreign countries to the relevant authorities in Jordan cannot be accepted unless they are based on an enforceable [extradition] treaty or agreement,” a Jordanian official reportedly said.
Arnold Roth claimed that the extradition is being blocked because Tamimi is associated with the Muslim Brotherhood.
“The king (of Jordan) is very, very respectful and careful of the Muslim Brotherhood. They haven’t been banned. They haven’t been shut down. There is a background here and it’s not legal, it’s political survival.”
Arnold is now asking for the Australian and American governments to put pressure on Jordan.
“I would like Australians to share the sense of injustice. Our daughter was murdered, that is a reality every day. It is immensely heavy and painful for us. We don’t expect anything to come out of this that would produce rejoicing. It’s not about revenge or to even the score, I just want justice to be done and as long as it is not done, there is a growing danger of more murders instigated by this woman.”
This week Arnold has appealed to Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and Foreign Minister Julie Bishop to get involved and bring his daughter’s killer to justice.
“Few measures could more powerfully express rejection of division and violence than Jordan, encouraged by its Australian friends, respecting its extradition obligations and bringing Malki’s bigoted, vicious and utterly unrepentant murderer to justice,” Arnold said.
Michael Danby, Federal Member for Melbourne Ports, said that while American President Donald Trump is visiting Jordan next week he should take a stand.
“I have appealed to Prime Minster Turnbull and Josh Frydenberg to ask that the American President insist, while he is in Jordan, that this mass murderer be extradited to the United States to face justice,” Danby said.
“Jordan is in receipt of large amounts of American and Australian taxpayer largesse. Trump and Turnbull must press the Jordanians to give up this cold-blooded killer.”
Executive Council of Australian Jewry executive director Peter Wertheim said Arnold had the community’s support.
“Any loving father would want to see the murderer of his daughter brought to justice,” Wertheim said.
“Malki was a dual Australian national and Australia has a legitimate role to play in urging Jordan to extradite her murderer for trial.
“It is the least the Australian government can do.”