Iraqi woman confesses on Jordan TV
Updated: 2005-11-14 07:30
An Iraqi woman confessed on Jordanian state television Sunday that she tried
to blow herself up along with her husband during a hotel wedding reception last
week, saying that the explosives concealed under her denim dress failed to
Sajida Mubarak Atrous al-Rishawi, 35, made her statement hours after being
arrested by authorities tipped off by an al-Qaida in Iraq claim that a
husband-and-wife team participated in Wednesday's bombings at three U.S.-based
hotels. The attackers killed 57 other people at the Radisson SAS, Grand Hyatt
and Days Inn hotels.
Mubarek Atrous al-Rishawi confesses on Jordanian state run TV. Sunday Nov.
13, 2005 about her failed bid to set off an explosives belt inside one of
the three Amman hotels targeted by al-Qaida.
Al-Rishawi's brother was once the right-hand man to Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, the
Jordanian leader of al-Qaida in Iraq, said deputy premier Marwan Muasher. He
said the brother, Mubarak Atrous al-Rishawi, was killed in the former terrorist
stronghold of Fallujah, Iraq.
Officials believe al-Rishawi, who entered Jordan from Iraq on Nov. 5, may
provide significant information about the operations of al-Zarqawi's group,
which claimed responsibility for the hotel bombings, Jordan's deadliest
terrorist attacks. The group said the attacks were retaliation for Jordan
supporting the United States and other Western powers.
Al-Rishawi was shown on state television wearing a white head scarf, a
buttoned, body-length dark denim dress, and belts packed with TNT and ball
bearings. Muasher told CNN the belts were captured with her.
Al-Rishawi said she and her husband, Ali Hussein Ali al-Shamari, 35, were
wearing explosive-laden belts when they strolled into a Radisson ballroom where
hundreds of guests, including children, were attending a Jordanian-Palestinian
"My husband wore a belt and put one on me. He taught me how to use it, how to
pull the (primer cord) and operate it," she said, wringing her hands.
"My husband detonated (his bomb). I tried to explode (my belt) but it
wouldn't. I left, people fled running and I left running with them."
Muasher said al-Rishawi's husband noticed her struggle and pushed her out of
the ballroom in order not to attract attention before blowing himself up.
After a second showing of the tape, a TV announcer cited security officials
as saying the woman gave no further details because "she was still suffering
from the shock of the blasts and her subsequent arrest."
Al-Rishawi was arrested Sunday morning at a "safe house" in the same Amman
suburb where her husband and the other two bombers rented a furnished apartment,
a top Jordanian security official said.