An audiotape purportedly from the head of al-Qaida in Iraq said Friday the group’s suicide bombers did not intend to bomb a Jordanian wedding party at an Amman hotel last week, killing about 30 people. The speaker on the tape, identified as Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, also threatened to kill Jordan’s King Abdullah II and bomb more hotels and tourist sites.
“Your star is fading. You will not escape your fate, you descendant of traitors. We will be able to reach your head and chop it off,” al- Zarqawi said, referring to the king.
Al-Zarqawi told Jordanians to stay away from bases used by U.S. forces in Jordan; hotels and tourist sites in Amman, the Dead Sea and the southern resort of Aqaba; and embassies of governments participating in the war in Iraq _ saying those areas would be targeted.
Al-Zarqawi said the bomber who detonated his explosives in the Radisson SAS hotel on Nov. 9 was targeting a hall where he claimed Israeli and American intelligence officials were meeting.
That bomb caused part of the roof to fall in the wedding hall.
“We didn’t target them. Our target was halls being used by Zionist intelligence who were meeting there at the time,” he said. “Our brothers knew their targets with great precision.”
Al-Zarqawi accused the Jordanian government of hiding casualties among Israeli and American intelligence agents, and he insisted al-Qaida in Iraq was not targeting fellow Muslims.
“We want to assure you that … you are more beloved to us than ourselves,” al-Zarqawi said, addressing Jordanians…