Tourism in the Middle East improved somewhat on Tuesday when 40 U.S. students become the?
SV Tourist bus across bridge & stops (2 shots)
SV Students off bus & welcomed by Israeli tourist officials (2 shots)
SV Girl students putting on "Shalom" hats (2 shots)
SV Students posing for photographs (2 shots)
CV israeli flag PAN TO bus away into Israel
Initials SGM/1633 SGM/1650
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: Tourism in the Middle East improved somewhat on Tuesday when 40 U.S. students become the first non-Arab tourists allowed to cross the Allenby Bridge from Jordan to the Israeli-occupied West Bank since the 1967 Arab-israeli war.
Israeli buses were permitted to cross the bridge to the Jordanian side of the River Jordan to bring back the students who are all from brougham Young University, a Mormon institution located in Salt Lake City, Utah.
The crossing is the latest move in a series of steps taken by the Israeli and Jordanian government to ease travel restrictions between their countries.
The fact that foreign tourists can now cross the bridge in either direction should prove beneficial to tourism on booths ides of the river. In the past, traffic across the Allenby Bridge, a temporary military structure, was restricted to vehicles carrying Arab passengers.