Jordan convicts 5 of trying to cross into Syria

AMMAN, Jordan (AP) — Jordan’s military court has convicted five Jordanians of trying to sneak into neighboring Syria to join rebels seeking to unseat President Bashar Assad.

The court sentenced the men in a brief hearing Monday to five years in jail with hard labor on charges of attempting to illegally cross the border to join a banned group.

Presiding judge Ahmed Qatarneh said the five — in their 20s and 30s — had confessed to planning to join the al-Qaida-linked Jabhat al-Nusra, or Nusra Front.

They were arrested in February 2012 on the Jordanian-Syrian border.

The prosecutor’s indictment said the five were members of the hard-line Salafi Jihadi Movement. The group is banned in Jordan.

Security sources say several hundred Jordanians have joined rebels in Syria. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language, racial slurs or consistent name calling will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

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