King attends ceremony to mark 50th anniversary of Karameh Battle

(MENAFN- Jordan Times) AMMAN — his majesty King Abdullah, the Supreme Commander of the Jordan Armed Forces-Arab army (JAF), on Sunday attended a national ceremony that was organised by the JAF at the Karameh town to mark the 50th anniversary of the Karameh Battle, which falls on Wednesday.

Upon the Supreme Commander's arrival at the site the artillery fired a 21-gun salute, according to a Royal Court statement.

He was received by Prime Minister and Minister of Defence Hani Mulki and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Lt. Gen. Mahmoud Freihat.

Several Royal family members, senior officials, and serving and retired officers attended the ceremony.

On March 21, 1968, Jordanian soldiers repelled an Israeli attack on the small Karameh town in the Jordan Valley, whose name means 'dignity'.

Eighty-six Jordanian soldiers lost their lives in the battle and 108 were wounded. The Israeli raid was repelled with heavy losses as the Jordanian army launched an artillery barrage against Israeli tanks.

A total of 250 Israeli soldiers were killed and 450 were wounded, according to official sources.

The King reviewed flag carriers who queued at the Unknown Soldier Monument and laid wreaths at the monument.

His Majesty recited verses from the Holy Koran and reviewed the names of the martyrs inscribed on the memorial and formations and units that fought in the 1968 battle.

In the neighbouring yard of the monument, where the national ceremony was held, King Abdullah centred 'heroes' of the battle, while facing the squares that formed a field simulating the battleground through the use of military vehicles and equipment that participated in the battle and won it.

Maj. Gen. Misleh Maaytah, head of operations and training at JAF, delivered a speech on behalf of army personnel, where he remembered the army's sacrifices in defending the homeland and achieving victory.

Maaytah said that Jordan has never abandoned any principle and has not and will not compromise its identity or doctrines whatever circumstances are.

He added that the Kingdom's stability and security is the army's top priority and will not allow anyone to mess with these, stressing that possible challenges and threats, imposed by the surrounding conditions, require all to stand side by side to prevent enemies from realising their evil goals.

In honour of heroes of the Karameh Battle, His Majesty and attendees stood up before the artillery fired a 21-gun salute for the battle's heroes and martyrs.

Later, the Supreme Commander watched shows that combined live performance with audio-visual technologies, as well as some shows that simulated some parts of the battle, which were implemented by JAF personnel and actors who wore military customs and helmets used in the 1968 battle.

The ceremony was concluded with a parachute jump, where parajumpers carried the banners of units that participated in the battle, while helicopters carried the Jordanian and JAF flags as other helicopters and fighter jets flew over the site.

King Abdullah also toured the Karameh Museum, which was established by JAF to document events of the battle and weapons used in it, as it includes photos, documents, maps and models related to the battle.


Jordan Times

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