Jordan imposes ban on Jewish religious items

Thursday, August 14, 2008 |  Israel Today Staff

A group of Israeli Jewish tourists told The Jerusalem Post that Jordanian border officials made them give up all their religious items, including Bibles, before they could enter the supposedly "moderate" Arab kingdom.

Israelis regularly travel to Jordan, and officials said they had never experienced such problems at the border before. But when a group of 36 clearly observant Jews arrived at the Sheikh Ali Hussein Crossing in northern Israel on Tuesday, they were told to either turn around or get rid of all Jewish prayer shawls, phylacteries, prayer books and Bibles.

The Jordanians insisted the ban was purely for "security reasons," though at least one group member said he observed Christian tourists entering Jordan wearing crosses with no interference.

Another member of the group wondered what the reaction would be "if Islamic tourists were to encounter such restrictions on their entry into Israel."

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