Allenby Bridge

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Allenby/King Hussein Bridge
Allenby Bridge(King Hussein Bridge) 2009.jpg
Allenby/King Hussein Bridge from the Jordanian side
Official name Allenby/King Hussein Bridge
מסוף אלנבי
جسر الملك حسين
Carries Pedestrians
Crosses Jordan River
Locale Jordan
West Bank
Maintained by Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan
Israel Airports Authority
Construction begin 1918
Construction end 1919- destroyed during the 1948 Arab-Israeli War
Opened 1994
Toll US $29.00
(Outbound West Bank/Jordan)
Daily traffic 1.2 million pedestrians in 2007 and 12,000 trucks[1]

Coordinates: 31°52′27″N 35°32′27″E / 31.87417°N 35.54083°E / 31.87417; 35.54083 The Allenby Bridge (Hebrew: גשר אלנבי‎, Gesher Allenby), also known as the King Hussein Bridge (Arabic: جسر الملك حسين‎, Jisr al-Malek Hussein), is a bridge that crosses the Jordan River, and connects the West Bank with Jordan. Other than through the West Bank,[clarification needed] the bridge is currently the sole designated exit/entry point for Palestinians residing in the West Bank traveling in and out of the West Bank.

History[edit]

The original bridge was built in 1918 over a remnant of an old Ottoman colonial era bridge by the British general Edmund Allenby. The original bridge had been built in 1885 by the Ottoman government of the Mutasarrifate of Jerusalem.[2]

It was destroyed once in the Night of the bridges operation by Palmach at June 16, 1946. It was destroyed again during the Six-Day War, but was replaced in 1968 with a temporary truss-type bridge. This bridge is still called the Allenby Bridge by Israelis, although it is also known as Al-Karameh Bridge to Palestinian Arabs, and the King Hussein Bridge to Jordanians. In the late 1990s, and subsequent to the Israel-Jordan peace treaty, a new modern paved crossing was constructed adjacent to the older wooden one with the aid of the Japanese Government.[3] This new structure is currently used exclusively.

The Allenby border crossing[edit]

Since the 1994 Israel–Jordan peace treaty, the Allenby Bridge Terminal is operated by the Israel Airports Authority.[4] It serves as a border crossing between the West and East Banks of the Jordan River. The Jordanian authorities recognize the bridge as an international border entry point, but do not grant entry visas to foreign passport holders at this crossing, in contrast to border crossings with Israel. Palestinians traveling abroad must use this bridge to exit the Palestinian Authority West Bank region into Jordan and then use the Queen Alia International Airport in Amman to fly abroad, because they are not permitted to use Ben Gurion Airport near Tel Aviv. Travel permits from both Israeli and Jordanian authorities are required, with varied stringency depending on the political situation.

Israeli citizens are not permitted to use the terminal, except pilgrims to Mecca, the Hajj and Omra.[4] Tourists who wish to travel to Jordan must be in possession of a visa from Jordan in advance. Those who leave Jordan via the Allenby Bridge may return by showing the exit visa. Tourists and inhabitants of East Jerusalem may travel directly to an Israeli terminal, although Palestinians from the West Bank have to start the departure procedure at the special Palestinian border terminal in Jericho city.

The Jordanian side of the bridge has a branch of the Bank of Jordan for the exchange of currencies.[5]

References[edit]

External links[edit]