History of Palestine: The Jordan River

History of Palestine: The Jordan River Last updated on Thursday 22nd April 2010

The Jordan River (Arabic: Nahar al-Urdunn) is 359km (223 miles) long and flows from Mount Hermon to the Dead Sea.

It drains an area of 16,000 sq km (6000 sq mi) and flows along the western side of the Golan Heights to the Sea of Galilee (Lake Tiberias). After the 1967 Arab-Israeli War, the river was recognized as the border between Jordan and Israel and the Israeli-occupied West Bank.

Because the river is shallow and follows such a twisting course, it is not used for navigation. It is of the greatest importance, however, for irrigation and the diversion of its waters for this purpose and for hydroelectric power is a matter of continual friction and dispute between Israel and Jordan.

The main crossing of the river is on the road from Jerusalem to Damascus, at the famous Allenby Bridge.

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