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 Editor's Review
West Bank
It is impossible to talk about the West Bank without referring to international politics and conflict… its status is as potentially volatile as a still-active volcano. However, a region that is archeologically 11,000 years old and central to three global religions cannot be ignored. The ‘Bank’ is of the River Jordan and the region lies between the river and the state of Israel to the west. (The separate ‘Gaza Strip’ is on the Mediterranean coast further west still.) Jordan itself is a highly evocative Biblical name while others include Jericho, Hebron, Jerusalem and Bethlehem. Jericho’s walls may have fallen but archeological remains abound and the town has been surrounded by rich orchards for time immemorial. Jerusalem is itself divided, with ‘East Jerusalem’ containing many of the Holy Places including the Al-Aqsa Mosque and the Church of the Holy Sepulchre. Bethelehem contains the awe-inspiring Church of the Nativity that is the longest continually-used church in the world and is sited above a cave thought to be the location of the birth of Jesus of Nazareth – a Jew venerated by Muslims and Christians alike.

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