8:45pm: If you’ve been driving around Amman tonight you’ve probably notice traffic is everywhere, and so are the Jordanian police. Most of the traffic circles have been highly controlled since around 4pm, specifically the 4th to the 7th circles. Police are diverting traffic and their police vans are blaring sirens and speeding through most of western Amman – up until the airport road.
A little mall opened in Swefieh and people were swarming there at around 6pm, and right now Khaberni is reporting that police shut down the area due to a security threat that was reported earlier in which someone claimed the building was going to collapse. The report turned out to be false according to the news site.
But something smells fishy about that report, specifically since there were really few police in that exact area around the building – only 1 or 2 traffic cops directing traffic as expected at a mall opening in Amman. In contrast, police were swarming around the 4th and other circles, cutting off a lot of traffic from move towards the circles, forcing them to go around instead.
If someone hears something, let me know.
8:56pm: A friend who just contacted a security officials was told that children’s TV channel was offering free goodies of some sort at the mall and this is what caused the eventual half-a-city shutdown. You can see their poster in the picture above.