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Last Updated: Wednesday, 21 April, 2004, 10:50 GMT 11:50 UK
Jordanian police kill 'militants'
Jordanian special forces raid a house where terror suspects were hiding
Jordanian police acted after a tip-off
Police in Jordan have killed four suspected militants in a shoot-out in the capital Amman, officials say.

Those killed are believed to be linked to a terror cell operating in Jordan.

The cell is alleged to have been plotting simultaneous bombing and chemical attacks against several targets - including the US Embassy.

The Jordanian authorities said last Saturday they had thwarted an attack on the intelligence headquarters by suspected militants linked to al-Qaeda.

Jordan, which has a peace treaty with Israel and strong ties with the US, has been targeted by militants in the past.

'Chemical bomb'

On Tuesday police stormed a hideout in eastern parts of Amman where the suspects had been hiding, the statement said.

Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, suspect in Iraqi attacks
Zarqawi has been condemned to death in absentia in Jordan
Officers urged those inside to surrender, but they replied with gunfire, it added.

It is not clear how many suspects were involved in the shootout, or if any escaped.

An official said two of those who died were foreigners.

Another official told the Associated Press news agency that they were linked to a group that had plotted to destroy government buildings with a powerful chemical bomb.

Had the bomb exploded, it would have killed at least 20,000 people and wrecked many buildings, government officials told AP.

The group is also believed to have been planning attacks against the US embassy and other diplomatic missions in Amman, the agency says.

Earlier this month, a Jordanian court sentenced to death eight Muslim radicals for killing a US government official in Amman in 2002.

Among those convicted was the suspected al-Qaeda leader in Iraq, Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, who was sentenced in absentia.


SEE ALSO:
Jordan militants sentenced to die
06 Apr 04  |  Middle East
Jordan steps up drive against militants
14 Nov 02  |  Middle East
Crackdown after Jordan killing
29 Oct 02  |  Middle East


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