Lookout point from Mitzpeh Yericho, facing Jericho. [photo: Aviva Morris]
Mitzpeh Yericho is an Israeli community in the Judean Desert, in the Binyamin Region on the highway between Jerusalem and The Dead Sea. It is located 20 km east of Jerusalem and 10 km east of Ma’ale Adumim. In 2016 it had a population of 2,319.
Mitzpeh Yericho was founded during the holiday of Sukkot, in October 1977. They were originally set to build next to Jericho but moved to Mishmor Adumim due to objections. A few days later, Ariel Sharon, who was then the Agricultural Minister, suggested they should move to a hilltop looking over Jericho. That hilltop became the location of Mitzpeh Yericho, where it still resides today.
The community is religiously diverse, composed of different observant levels and religious traditions. There is the main synagogue, which is Ashkenazi, in addition to two Sephardi synagogues, a Yemenite synagogue, a Chabad synagogue, and various other congregations.
It is organized as a community under the jurisdiction of Mateh Binyamin Regional Council. The community is located in Samaria, in the portion of Israel that was designated for the tribe of Benjamin.