• Short Summary

    The Allenby and Damya Bridges over the River Jordan were opened on 16 June for the annual three month "summer season" during which visitors from Arab countries are allowed to cross from Jordan to visit relatives living in Israeli-occupied territories.

  • Description

    The Allenby and Damya Bridges over the River Jordan were opened on 16 June for the annual three month "summer season" during which visitors from Arab countries are allowed to cross from Jordan to visit relatives living in Israeli-occupied territories.

    Official estimates put the number of visitors expected over the next three months at 100,000 - a massive increase on last year's figure of 53,000. Israeli Military Government officials say that the number of entry permits issued indicate that well over 50,000 are anticipated to make the crossing during this month alone. And on Monday (21 June), the Israeli Defence Minister, General Moshe Dayan, at a press conference held at the Allenby Bridge, said that this traffic was an example of what his government meant when it spoke of entering into "partial agreements" with Egypt.

    The expected increase in numbers this year is due in part to the decline of guerrilla influence in Jordan and the subsequent decrease in intimidation against Arab families wishing to make the crossing.

    This summer scheme was introduced by General Dayan, against opposition from within his own government, three years ago.

    SYNOPSIS: Israel's Defence Minister, General Moshe Dayan, visited the Allenby Bridge over the River Jordan on Monday to watch the large numbers of Arabs crossing into Israeli-occupied territory under the annual three-month "summer scheme". At a press conference near the Bridge, he told newsmen that this free traffic illustrated the type of peace agreement Israel wished to formulate with Egypt.

    General Dayan set up this scheme in 1968. For three months every summer, permits are issued to Arabs wishing to visit relatives and friends living in territories occupied by Israel since the end of the five day war with Egypt in 1967.

    They enter via the Allenby Bridge, near Jericho, and the Damya Bridge, near Nablus. The numbers of people taking advantage of the scheme have increased every year. This year, the Israeli authorities are expecting one hundred thousand visitors - almost double the number of people who applied for permits last summer. Checkpoint formalities are necessary to keep a watch on permits, health vaccinations, and the possibility of Arab saboteurs attempting to slip in with the crowd. This was the main objection of General Dayan's opponents of the scheme when he proposed it three years ago. But so far, very few attempts have been reported. The visitors come from all over the Arab world. They may, on special application, travel into Israel itself. Students, in particular, ask for permission to visit the universities in Haifa, Jerusalem, and Tel Aviv.

  • Tags

  • Data

    Film ID:
    VLVA955VHTTW6OLM0QP7C4BDWICHA
    Media URN:
    VLVA955VHTTW6OLM0QP7C4BDWICHA
    Group:
    Reuters - Source to be Verified
    Archive:
    Reuters
    Issue Date:
    22/06/1971
    Sound:
    Unknown
    HD Format:
    Available on request
    Stock:
    Colour
    Duration:
    00:01:18:00
    Time in/Out:
    /
    Canister:
    N/A

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