A Jordanian soldier, Ahmed Daqamseh, who murdered seven Israeli schoolgirls in 1997, is due to be released from prison next week after serving 20 years, Jordanian government spokesman Mohammed Momani said.
Daqamseh killed the Israeli schoolgirls in a shooting rampage at the “Island of Peace” post on the Israeli-Jordanian border. The girls had been visiting Jordan on a school trip. Following the shooting, a Jordanian military court sentenced Daqamseh to life in prison after he was deemed mentally unstable. He is now set for an early release following several years of intensive lobbying efforts on his behalf by Jordanian lawmakers.
Speaking on the Al Jazeera network in May 2001, Daqamseh’s mother said her son had “no regrets” about the murders and that the only thing he expressed remorse about was the fact that his gun “did not work properly.” Otherwise, he would have “killed all of the passengers on the bus,” his mother said.
The shooting occurred only three years after Israel and Jordan signed a historic peace treaty. Shortly after the incident, King Hussein, Jordan’s ruler at the time, paid a rare visit to the Jewish state and personally delivered his condolences to the girls’ parents.