- The Washington Times - Tuesday, October 29, 2002

The U.S. Embassy in Amman said yesterday it was working closely with the Jordanian authorities in investigating the shooting death of a senior diplomat.
A statement issued by the embassy condemned the assassination of Lawrence Foley, an employee of the U.S. Agency for International Development in Jordan, as a "horrible crime."
It said Mr. Foley was shot and killed outside his home at 7:20 a.m., adding the American community in the kingdom was "outraged by this incomprehensible act."
U.S. State Department spokesman Richard Boucher confirmed that Mr. Foley was killed "by multiple shots at close range" early yesterday morning. But Mr. Boucher would not elaborate further.
Mr. Foley, 60, served as the executive officer of the U.S. Agency for International Development programs in Amman where he served since 2000. Before then, he was a USAID officer in Bolivia, Peru and Zimbabwe.
"Larry was a highly decorated foreign service officer, but will be remembered even more vividly for his charm, wit and friendship," USAID Administrator Andrew Natsios told reporters Monday.
The U.S. embassy also reiterated its warning to U.S. citizens to "remain vigilant in view of threats to American interests."
The embassy was closed indefinitely and American citizens were warned in the country to be alert upon leaving and entering their homes.
A new warning message to Americans living in Jordan issued yesterday says: "U.S. citizens should exercise caution, be aware of their surroundings and vary travel routes and times. The level of alertness should be particularly high during arrival at/departure from residences. Any suspicious activity should be reported to the police."
Jordanian security sources said the police have been mobilized to search of the assailant, whom they said appeared to have been a single attacker.
They said Mr. Foley's wife had found her husband dead in their garden and called the police. They said the diplomat died instantly after receiving several bullets.
Jordan's King Abdullah offered U.S. Ambassador Edward Gnehm his condolences and promised to use all resources necessary to find the killer and protect U.S. officials serving in his country.
In an official statement, Information Minister Mohammad Adwan condemned the slaying as "a treacherous attack against Jordan and its national security," and promised to track down the killer.
Security sources said it was too early to tell whether political motives were behind the shooting, but added that security was ordered beefed up around the homes of U.S. Embassy and other State Department staff in Jordan.
Mr. Boucher did not call the killing an act of terrorism, reserving judgment until more information came out of the investigation, but the American Foreign Service Association, of which Mr. Foley was a member, did.
"We have no on the ground information as to who did it and what their motivation was, we just concluded that the circumstances indicated it was an intentional targeting for political reasons of a U.S. diplomat," AFSA President John Naland told United Press International in an interview yesterday. "We have no independent information, if it turns out otherwise, then the State Department's prudence would have been warranted."
Jordan is a close ally of the United States and is the third-largest recipient of aid from Washington after Israel and Egypt.
But popular anti-American sentiments have grown in the kingdom for what most Jordanians view as U.S. support for Israel's policies against the Palestinians since the eruption of the uprising the West Bank and Gaza in September 2000.
Growing U.S. threats to launch a war against neighboring Iraq have also angered many of the 5 million Jordanians.

Sana Abdallah reported from Amman, Jordan, Eli J. Lake from Washington, D.C.

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