Middle East

Jordan 'targets vehicles crossing from Syria'

Pick-up truck attacked and destroyed by Jordanian warplanes on the Jordan-Syria border (16 April 2014)
Image caption A Jordanian government spokesman said it was increasingly worried about "cases of infiltration"

Jordanian warplanes have targeted and destroyed several vehicles trying to cross the border from Syria, the Jordanian military has said.

A statement said the "camouflaged" vehicles tried to enter from a rugged area. When warning shots were ignored, the fighter jets opened fire, it added.

Photographs given to the BBC showed two unmarked pick-up trucks riddled with bullets, one of them on fire.

Syrian state media cited the army as saying it was not linked to them.

A Jordanian security source told the Reuters news agency that the vehicles were thought to have been driven by Syrian rebels.

Spokesman Mohammed al-Momani said the government was increasingly worried about "cases of infiltration" and "reports that talk about armed groups that are close to the border and the absence of security there".

The kingdom sees the many hardline Islamist and jihadist rebels fighting in Syria as a domestic security threat, and has boosted security along the 370km (230-mile) border to prevent them entering.

Although it publicly denies supporting either side in the Syrian conflict, the Jordanian government is reported to have provided a staging ground for secular and moderate Islamist rebel factions and their foreign backers.