TEL AVIV, Israel — Israel has taken one more step to walling itself off from its neighbors.
The border with Jordan is the last Israeli frontier that is totally open to a neighboring country; the borders with Egypt, Syria and Lebanon are all fenced off.
But the nation’s Security Cabinet adopted a proposal last month to build an approximately 18-mile-long fence along Israel’s eastern border with Jordan.
The 16-foot-high barrier is intended to prevent Islamist extremists and migrants from entering the country, and will stretch from the southern port city of Eilat to Timna.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu described the fence as vital to national security.
Some experts say that ISIS could exploit Jordanians who live close to the border.
“The infiltrators could be illegal workers but they could also be terrorists who will carry out attacks”
“The Bedouins rule that area, [but] because of economic reasons that include poverty and unemployment there is danger that ISIS will be able to infiltrate,” said Oded Eran, a former Israeli Ambassador to Jordan. “A lot of countries like Israel understand the only way to seal off their border is by installing a system of fences.”
Pressure from Israeli citizens spurred the government into action, along with the construction of the Timna Airport. Destined to become the country’s southern aerial gateway, some fear the airport could become a prime target for militants crossing the border.