The Allenby Border Terminal is the southern border crossing on the Jordan River. The terminal is situated 5km east of Jericho, approximately 273m below sea level, and is located in the broadest area in the Jordan Valley – about 32 km in width. At 54 minutes drive from Amman, this terminal is the shortest way to travel between the central cities of Israel and Amman itself. Recently, the Committee for Names has decided to change the terminal’s name to “King Hussein Bridge Terminal”.
The terminal is used for crossing the border between Israel and Jordan and between the Palestinian Authority and Jordan, and also as a customs checkpoint in the transport of goods between Israel, the Palestinian Authority and Jordan.
The Allenby Border Terminal is reserved for Palestinians and tourists only; Israeli citizens are prohibited from crossing the border here. Indeed, the terminal is used mainly by the Palestinian population from the West Bank, and throughout the years it has operated in tight cooperation between Israel, the Palestinian Authority and Jordan.
The Allenby Border Terminal is one of the five land passageways between Israel and its neighboring countries to the east and southeast of the Jordan River. It was established during WWI as a passage for British armed forces from the east bank to the west bank and inversely. The structure was originally built as a simple wooden bridge, and over the years it has become one of the three major bridges connecting the two banks.
1946 – Night of the Bridges. The original bridge was destroyed by bombs and in its place Bailey Bridge was erected and used until the Six Day War, during which the bridge was again destroyed. Following this war, with the Open Door Policy implemented by the Israeli Civil Administration and the West Bank authorities, the bridge was rebuilt and enabled massive movement of Arab citizens from both sides of the river.
1994 – Oslo I Accord. During these landmark negotiations, an agreement was signed with Jordan, and the Israel Airports Authority received responsibility for the operation of the terminal.