Jordanian politician brandishes pistol during TV debate

Mohammed Shawabka, a member of Jordan's parliament, threatened a political activist with a pistol while the two were engaged in a furious political debate on live television on July 6. Shawabka had been discussing the politics of the Mideastern kingdom with activist Mansour Sayf al-Din Murad.

As the discussion became more heated, the two men accused each of crimes and treason, including alleged cooperation with Israel's Mossad intelligence service.  “You’re a Mossad agent,” said one. “You’re a big crook,” said the other. Shawabka stood up during the argument and began pointing at Murad, while program host Mohammed Habashneh sought comity between them.

However, Shawabka then sat down and then took off his right shoe, and threw it at the activist, who cowered behind his desk and knocked it over. Shawabka then pulled a pistol out of his waistband and briefly brandished it at the activist, who walked toward him. The MP kept holding the gun, but was no longer pointing it at his critic.

The two men struggled, with the parliamentarian again careful now not to point the gun at Murad, while the panicked host tried to break up the fight. However, the brawl continued for some time before the program cut to the credits.



Spero News editor Martin Barillas is a former US diplomat, who also worked as a democracy advocate and election observer in Latin America. He is also a freelance translator.

Filed under crime, politics, jordan, islam, crime, tv, politics, Middle East

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