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King, Queen pay respects to pilot’s family in hometown

By JT - Feb 05,2015 - Last updated at Feb 05,2015

AMMAN – His Majesty King Abdullah on Thursday visited the town of Ai, near the southern city of Karak, to offer condolences to the family of air force pilot Muath Kasasbeh, who was killed by the so-called Islamic State (IS) terrorist group. 

Her Majesty Queen Rania also paid a visit to the family of the slain pilot to pay her respects, a statement by her office said.

The King said the pilot has joined an elite group of fallen heroes, who died in the line of duty across Jordan’s history. The pilot, he said, “fell while defending the beloved Jordan, the message of Islam and humanity", according to the Royal Court. 

Addressing Kasasbeh's family and tribe, he underlined that the Jordan Armed Forces-Arab Army is proud of the martyr, “whose name will forever be carved in the hearts of Jordanians”.

The Monarch stressed that the war on terrorism will continue in the defence of Islam, the country and people.

King Abdullah was accompanied by HRH Prince Feisal, Prime Minister Abdullah Ensour, Royal Court Chief Fayez Tarawneh and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs-of-Staff and King’s Adviser for Military Affairs Mashal Al Zaben, along with other senior civil and military officials.

For his part, Safi Kasasbeh, the pilot’s father, said that His Majesty’s visit and support to the family are highly appreciated, noting that the Kasasbeh tribe, “like all Jordanians”, stands unified and strong behind the Hashemite leadership. 

“My son, Muath, is your son,” he told the King, saying that the tribe’s youth are willing to walk the same path of Muath and die in defence of Jordan. 

Queen Rania expressed her deepest condolences to the mother, sisters and wife of Kasasbeh, assuring them that Muath “will remain in the hearts and memories of all Jordanians as a hero who sacrificed his life defending his country and religion”, according to the statement.

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