AMMAN — Hamad Al-Hajri, Charge d’Affaires in the Saudi Embassy in Amman, said that a meeting was recently held with Jordanian authorities to discuss the rising theft of Saudi-registered vehicles.
Al-Watan newspaper reviewed some of the carjackings reported by Saudi tourists. In one case, a citizen was robbed at gunpoint by people who impersonated police officers. The citizen was allegedly taken to a remote area and robbed of his vehicle.
Another Saudi, who is studying in a Jordanian university, was reportedly stabbed several times by carjackers in the Jordanian capital. Upon leaving the university, the student was accosted in a parking lot and stabbed multiple times by the assailants who then made off with his vehicle. Al-Watan was given access to the student’s medical file and police communication.
The most recent case was that of Hever Al-Anzi who said he was in Jordan on a recent trip with a relative when his car was stolen in front of his residence on one of Amman’s main streets. Al-Anzi said his car contained official documents, money and his identification card.
Victims of carjackings blamed the Saudi embassy in Jordan, accusing the embassy staff of negligence in performing their duties despite the directives of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah and Foreign Minister Prince Saud Al-Faisal, which emphasize that staff in foreign missions should do their assigned duties and be of service to citizens.
They also called up on Jordanian authorities to increase security, especially in light of the increasing number of Saudis who visit Jordan either for tourism or medical purposes.
Col. Muhammed Al-Khatib, the spokesman of the Jordanian police, said in a statement that the incidents were isolated and are negligible compared to the number of Saudi visitors who are reportedly in the millions.
“There have been no more than 10 incidents of car thefts during the summer and we are undertaking the necessary measures to catch the perpetrators and bring them to justice,” said Al-Khatib while calling on Saudi visitors not to hesitate to report any crimes.
He denied that Saudis were being targeted and said anyone, regardless of nationality, could be the victim of such crimes. Al-Khatib added that some of the victims may have been in the wrong place at the wrong time.
“Saudis are often negligent and easily trust strangers. They should be vigilant and careful of their surroundings.”
According to statistics, 2.2 million Saudi tourists visited Jordan last year, a number that is expected to further increase this year. — SG