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NOW

Jordan border guards killed
Syria officer: pro-Assad outlets

The circumstances of Ali Mohammad Dib's death in southern Syria's Suweida remain mysterious.

Ali Mohammad Dib. (Facebook/Akhbar Masyaf)

BEIRUT – A number of small pro-Assad outlets have accused Jordanian border guards of shooting dead a Syrian officer, although neither Syrian state media nor Amman have made any comment on the purported incident.

 

Reports first emerged July 10 that First Lieutenant Ali Mohammad Dib—who hails from the coastal village of Majdaloun al-Bustan—was killed in the southern Suweida province, a normally secure Druze-populated region of the country.

 

Occasional bouts of fighting have erupted on the northeastern edge of Suweida province, where ISIS has a presence, however no clashes were reported in the flashpoint area in the past week.

 

The “Homeland of Martyrs” Facebook page said that Dib died “defending the homeland,” but did not go into further details on the location of his death other than stating that the officer was killed in the Suweida countryside.

 

Another Facebook page that regularly posts death notices for Syrian army personnel also noted Dib’s death Sunday in Suweida, but did not specify how he died, although one commentator from Suweida responded to the post that the officer was killed by Jordanian border guards.

 

The following day, popular pro-Assad outlets based in the southern province claimed that the young officer was shot dead along the Jordanian border.

 

The Suweida News Network reported that Dib was shot in the back by Jordanian army troops while “scanning the embankment of the Syrian-Jordanian border” southeast of the Suweida village of Anat, which lies on the edge of a sparsely-populated area stretching down to the border.

 

A similar report was carried by the Suweida Now Facebook page, which said that Dib was “performing his service” south of Anat.

 

Syria’s state SANA news agency made no mention of any shooting incident along the border, while Jordan also stayed mum on the alleged incident.

 

While Jordanian security forces guarding their country’s border have opened fire on infiltrators a number of times during the course of the Syrian uprising, neither country has yet to acknowledge that any Syrian army troops have been shot at since 2011.

 

Amman has tightened security measures along the border with Syria after an ISIS suicide attack on June 21 left six Jordanian troops dead.

 

NOW's English news desk editor Albin Szakola (@AlbinSzakola) wrote this report. Amin Nasr translated Arabic-language material. 

Ali Mohammad Dib. (Facebook/Akhbar Masyaf)

The Suweida News Network reported that Dib was shot in the back by Jordanian army troops while “scanning the embankment of the Syrian-Jordanian border."