News Brief 7/22/2010, Av 11, 5770
Group: Halt Baptisms at Jordan River Site
Environmentalists have issued a call to halt baptisms in the southern part of the Jordan River, at the site known as “Qasr al-Yahud,” until the water quality at the site improves. A recent Health Ministry report said that there was a higher than permitted level of harmful bacteria at the site. The Health Ministry had already asked the Jewish National Fund and Tourism Ministry to direct pilgrims to points farther north on the river, where water quality was better.
The environmental group, “Friends of the Earth,” accused the Ministry of relaxing standards in order to allow the baptisms to continue, in order to promote Christian tourism.