Dead Sea reaches finals of 'new seven wonders' contest

Wednesday, July 22, 2009 |  Israel Today Staff

The Dead Sea has been chosen as one of the finalists in the "Seven Natural Wonders of the World" contest being conducted online.

The Dead Sea, the lowest spot on earth, will vie for a spot in the new seven wonders list against 28 other natural wonders, including places such as the Amazon River and the Grand Canyon.

Voting on the final list will take place over two years, and organizers hope to have hundreds of millions of votes by the time the contest comes to an end in 2011.

The Dead Sea almost didn't make it into the contest.

The rules of the contest stipulated that natural wonders located in more than one country required all of the countries to form a joint supporting committee. The Palestinian Authority originally refused to be part of the committee because it was at first backed on the Israeli side by a Jewish settler council.

After Israel's Ministry of Tourism agreed to become the official sponsor on the Israeli side, Palestinian Authority leader Mahmoud Abbas acquiesced and agreed to join Israel and Jordan in nominating the Dead Sea.

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