Canadian tourist among seven killed by gunmen in Jordan, as police hunt suspects in Crusader-era castle


Gunmen have killed seven people including a Canadian tourist and police officers in a city in southern Jordan where security forces were hunting down the unidentified attackers.

The shootings took place in Karak, a tourist destination known for one of the biggest Crusader castles in the region, around 120 kilometres (70 miles) south of the capital Amman.

Jordan’s general security department said four policemen, a female Canadian tourist and two Jordanian civilians were killed in a series of shootings. Several others were reported wounded.

The first attack took place when a police patrol went to check on a fire that broke out in a house in Karak, the department said.

“As soon as they reached the area, unknown gunmen who were inside the house opened fire on the patrol, wounding a policeman, and then fled by car,” it said in a statement carried by the official Petra news agency.

Jordanian policemen and an ambulance at Karak Castle 
Jordanian policemen and an ambulance at Karak Castle 
“Shortly afterwards, gunmen opened fire on another patrol without causing any casualties,” it added.

At the same time, gunmen holed up in the Crusader castle opened fire on the Karak police station, “wounding several policemen and passersby” who were rushed to hospital, the statement added.

“Police and security forces have surrounded the castle and its vicinity and launched an operation to hunt down the gunmen,” the statement said, adding that the search was still under way.

The ministry said “five or six gunmen” were thought to be involved in the shootings.