Israel becomes 1st country to impose 2nd nationwide coronavirus lockdown

Tim O'Donnell
·1 min read

The Israeli government on Sunday announced it will impose a nationwide, three-week lockdown starting Friday, the eve of Rosh Hashana, the Jewish new year, to combat rising coronavirus infection numbers. The decision comes before a string of national holidays over the next month, which prompted fears of mass gatherings, The Guardian reports.

Although the full details will be released later Sunday, the lockdown reportedly means people can only venture 500 meters from their homes and most businesses will close, making Israel the first country to reimpose such severe restrictions on a national scale after previously implementing a lockdown earlier during the pandemic.

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Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who has faced fierce criticism and protests for re-opening the economy too quickly this spring during the initial phase of the pandemic, said the country's hospitals "raised a red flag" that the health-care system could be overwhelmed if infections continue to rise.

Israel has 37,482 active coronavirus cases and 1,103 people have died from COVID-19 since the pandemic began, Haaretz reports. Read more at Haaretz and The Guardian..

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