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Isle Of Peace: Where The Jordan Meets The Yarmouk

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The churning rapids at Naharayim, or ‘two rivers,’ helped birth the first hydroelectric power station in the land of Israel

When Israel and Jordan signed a peace treaty in 1994, special arrangements were made for a parcel of land near Naharayim and Kibbutz Ashdot Ya’acov. Although the land had belonged to Israel for decades and had been farmed by Israeli settlers, under the treaty it was transferred to Jordan.

Then, in a spirit of cooperation, it was leased back to Israel so that settlers could continue cultivating their fields. From that time on, visitors were warmly welcomed to the Israeli enclave inside the Kingdom of Jordan, and the amicable agreement was tangible proof that peaceful coexistence could be a reality. The so-called island became known as the Isle of Peace.

Nearly three years later, a group of schoolgirls from Beit Shemesh participated in an outing to Naharayim and the Isle of Peace. The girls and their unarmed teachers were standing on a hill above an abandoned lake in the enclave when a Jordanian soldier aimed his weapon in their direction and pulled the trigger. Seven girls were killed in the massacre.

Following that tragic event, the late King Hussein made an unprecedented trip to each of the victims’ homes to express his personal sorrow and the grief of his nation. Eventually, new security arrangements were finalized that ensured the safety of contemporary Israeli visitors.

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Read the full article over at The Times of Israel.

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Testimonials
Dear Aviva and Shmuel,
We had an uneventful trip home, and are finally pretty much off jet lag. We thank you so much for your planning, communicating, and all around help, Aviva. Shmuel, we thank you for showing us so much of your wonderful country and sharing so much information. I feel so much respect for the people who started and built up the country of Israel. It makes a difference seeing it and having a guide like Shmuel to give us the history, interesting and important facts, and guiding us to the places that matter.
Tom and Bonnie

Tom and Bonnie Cunningham