Menu JTA Search

Allon Calls for the Intensification of Settlements in the Jordan Valley

Foreign Minister Yigal Allon indicated yesterday that he would press for implementation of the so-called Allon plan that would define Israel’s future boundaries with Jordan. He told newsmen, after completing a tour of the region involved, that he would recommend to Premier Yitzhak Rabin the intensification of settlement projects west of the Jordan River and north of the Dead Sea.

Allon stressed that his tour could be linked to Israel’s future security boundaries. It included a drive along the 22-kilometer road between Ma’ale Adumim and Ma’ale Ephraim and the road to Biet Shean across the Judaean and Samarian highlands paralleling the Jordan River. While he declined to discuss the political effects of the Allon plan on negotiations with Jordan, he observed, “we control the western bank of the Jordan River and the Hashemite Kingdom controls the eastern one. Things are quiet here Tranquility is mutual.”

The Allon plan was proposed nine years ago, immediately after the Six-Day War by Allon who was then Deputy Prime Minister. It was never officially adopted by the Israeli government but was not rejected and is regarded by some circles as at least a tentative blueprint of Israel’s future boundaries on the east. The plan would provide autonomy for the Arab populated areas of the West Bank, ringing them with a chain of Jewish security settlements on the western fringes and along the banks of the Jordan.

Allon’s remarks conformed to the essentials of that plan. He said he would recommend that the new settlements of Ma’ale Adumim on the Jerusalem-Jericho road and Ma’ale Ephraim, overlooking the Damyah Bridge on the Jordan be converted into urban centers. He also called for more settlements on the eastern fringes of the West Bank and in the Gush Etzion and Rafah regions. He said such settlements could serve as a lever in Israel’s political struggle.

NEXT STORY