AMMAN – Jordan said a series of massive explosions that rocked the city of Zarqa earlier on Friday was likely caused by an electric short circuit at a nearby army munitions depot.
There were no immediate reports of casualties from the explosion which took place in the desert east of Jordan’s second-largest city, the government and the army command said.
Huge orange flames lit the desert night sky and could be seen as far away as the capital Amman, 35 km (22 miles) to the southwest.
The desert area where the explosions took place houses several major U.S. – equipped army bases including an airfield built in 2018. Jordan’s location makes it an ideal logistics and supply hub for the United States, including for the U.S. military’s garrison at Tanaf in southeastern Syria.
‘Initial investigations show that the explosion was caused by an electric circuit in army ammunition depots that are in an isolated and upopulated area and under camera surveillance’, government spokesman Amjad Adailah said.
Adailah said mortars stored at the facility were old and not usable but an army source said on condition of anonymity that some of the weapons at the site were precision – guided anti – aircraft missiles.