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Baptismal On the Jordon River Now Mine-Free

Following a massive explosion that triggered more than 500 landmines in a controlled explosion in March 2020, the Qasr al-Yahud site where Yeshua is believed to have been baptized on the Jordan River is free of landmines for the first time in 53 years. Nearly all the major sects of Christianity have monasteries, churches, and chapels at the site, 10 km. east of Jericho. In 1968, after the Six-Day War, Israel made the site a closed military zone, fearing terrorists could use the churches as a staging ground for attacks. The Jordan River is only a few meters wide at that point and easily crossable on foot. The site is also holy to some Jews. Qasr al-Yahud translates as "The Castle of the Jews," and some believe it was the spot where the Jewish people crossed into Israel for the first time after leaving Egypt. It is also believed to be the site of Elijah the Prophet's ascent to heaven in a "chariot of fire" and the place where his disciple Elisha performed miracles. (Times of Israel)