Agricultural land in Tzofar
Agricultural land in TzofarCentral Arava Regional Council

Jordan rejected Israel's request for a six-month extension to allow more time for Israeli farmers to continue to cultivate their fields in the enclaves of Tzofar and Naharayim, Channel 13 News reported on Thursday.

Under the 1994 peace agreement between Israel and Jordan, Naharayim and Tzofar were leased to Israel for 25 years, allowing the Israeli farmers living in the enclave to continue managing their farms.

Last year, the Hashemite Kingdom announced that it wanted to terminate the lease agreement and take over the two enclaves. On Thursday Jordan announced that, as of Sunday, Israeli farmers will be banned from entering Naharayim.

According to Channel 13 News, Jordanian Foreign Minister Ayman al-Safadi suggested to Israeli national security adviser Meir Ben Shabbat at their meeting this week that, instead of granting an extension to the Israeli farmers, the Jordanian government will pay the farmers pay financial compensation for the produce left in the fields.

He noted that Jordan would not in any way agree to another lease period of the enclaves, adding that if such agreements were reached, they would only be executed between private Israeli or Jordanian companies and directly with the farmers.