Israeli military shuts down youth bike tour in the Jordan Valley citing ‘security threat’

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Editor’s Note: For more on this event see the post Video: Senior IDF officer smashes peaceful activist in the face with his M-16.

On Saturday, a group of Palestinians and internationals went to the Jordan Valley in what they hoped would be a fun-filled day with an event organized by Sharek Youth Forum.

As we began riding, we noticed several settler cars heading back from what we assumed was a camping trip. A few minutes later, Israel army jeeps arrived to block the road. The crime? RIDING BIKES IN THE JORDAN VALLEY!

Why did they prevent us you ask? We were given three reasons, not in any specific order:
1) for your security
2) riding bikes here is a security threat
3) this is a closed military zone

In short, our bike tour didn’t happen. Nonetheless, the town of Jiftlik provided us with za3tar and cheese sandwiches. And while we were watching performances, the soldiers were sitting outside overdressed and sitting directly in the sun. No wonder they were cranky!

viva palestina

You can find a PDF factsheet on the Jordan Valley and Dead Sea area here.

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Seeing Palestinians with their friends having some fun and enjoying the Palestinian countryside is like a red rag to a bull as far as the IDF joyless thugs are concerned. What a provocation it must be for their tiny minds, as well as for their settler bosses.

great video, i cried when it showed the cultural festival. thank you.

I wonder what was the specific situation. Was it that the road is “Palestinien-rein”? Did the tour attempt to ride that rode or cross it? Or one of those impromptu “military closures”?

This was not a holiday ride in the countryside. The group of Palestinian and foreign bicyclists intended to block route 90 in the Jordan valley.