ZOA Government Relations Department Director Dan Pollak and Deputy Director Joel Kassiday were instrumental in helping Rep. Scott Perry (R-PA) gain the signatures of 19 bipartisan lawmakers on a letter to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo requesting the extradition to the U.S. of Alhan Aref Ahmad-Tamimi from Jordan. Al-Tamimi has been charged by the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) with conspiring to use a weapon of mass destruction against U.S. nationals outside the U.S. resulting in death. A Jordanian citizen and a member of the terrorist group Hamas, Al-Tamimi was a primary planner of the 2001 bombing of the Sbarro pizzeria in Jerusalem, Israel, which killed 15 people, including two U.S. citizens (Malka Chana Roth, 15, and Shoshana Yehudit Greenbaum, 31, who was 5-months pregnant). Four other U.S. citizens were among the 122 other people wounded by the attack.
After she pleaded guilty in an Israeli court in 2003, Al-Tamimi was sentenced to 16 consecutive life terms in prison plus 15 years. She served only eight years of that sentence before being released by Israel in 2011 as part of a prisoner exchange with Hamas. She has since been a resident of Jordan and has repeatedly boasted of her involvement with the Sbarro bombing. The DOJ has sought Al-Tamimi’s extradition, but Jordan has rejected the request. The letter to Secretary Pompeo asks that the State Department continue to press Jordan for Al-Tamimi’s extradition.
ZOA sent personal appeals to 86 Members of Congress from both parties to co-sign Rep. Perry’s letter. We were happy to see a total of 20 Members of Congress sign the letter, which went out today (March 19, 2019).