Israel on Thursday stepped up its corona virus measures. A week after its second nationwide lockdown, AFP reports that it has failed to reduce the world’s highest infection rate.
The new rules will close the vast majority of workplaces and shutter markets and limit prayers and demonstrations.
“Our priority is to save lives – we are living in a moment of national crisis,” Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told a news conference on Thursday evening, justifying the decision to tighten controls.
“The nation of Israel will overcome the epidemic and we will be stronger,” he added, without elaborating on all the steps taken by his government.
The move comes as Israel prepares for the second week of a three – week lockdown last Friday. This includes school closures and work and leisure restrictions.
Under the new measures approved during the first reading of Parliament on Thursday, only “essential” work will be allowed from 2.00 pm (1100 GMT) local time on Friday, and synagogues will be allowed to open only on the Jewish holiday of Yom Kippur. Sunday afternoon.
At other times, only doctoral prayers with a maximum of 20 participants are allowed. The same restrictions were applied to performances.
The government said on Thursday it would decide whether to close Ben Gurion International Airport outside Tel Aviv.
“To save the lives of Israeli citizens, we now have a full lockdown for two weeks,” Netanyahu said earlier.
The economy also needs this. It would be a mistake for anyone to think that we can deal with an increasing epidemic of death and infection without affecting the economy. ”
Israel has the highest corona virus infection rate in the world, with an AFP report of the last two weeks – 200,000 infections per nine million population.