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EIN GEDI, Israel (AP) – A multinational group of swimmers swam seven hours through the salty, soupy waters of the Dead Sea on Tuesday in a bid to draw attention to the environmental degradation of the fabled lake.
At dawn, the 25 swimmers left on boats from Ein Gedi on the Israeli side of the Dead Sea to Wadi Mujib on the Jordanian side. Then, wearing special protective masks and snorkels, the swimmers paddled through the thick waters in what turned into a 17-kilometer (11-mile) swim from Jordan to Israel.
Swimming in the Dead Sea is unusual.
Tourists typically dip themselves from the beaches and float on the water with the help of the lake’s high salt concentration. It also draws people from around the world who believe the water’s high mineral content is beneficial for skin conditions.