Israel Extends Emergency Measures to Halt Spread of Coronavirus

An Israeli woman has her temperature on June 16taken before entering the Mahane Yehuda market in Israel, part of a national effort to halt the spread of the coronavirus. (Olivier Fitoussi/Flash90)

By Marcy Oster

JERUSALEM — The Knesset approved extending emergency measures targeting the spread of the coronavirus as the number of cases in Israel saw its largest one-day increase in the past two months.

The legislation, which will remain in force for 45 days starting Wednesday, was approved late Tuesday night, as the last emergency measures expired.

Among the measures approved is a requirement for Israelis to wear masks in public and maintain proper social distancing. The law also allows police to call a halt to large gatherings, with the exception of protests, and to fine violators.

A total of 303 Israelis have died of the virus, with the total number of cases diagnosed at 19,637. The number reflected a rise of 300 cases in the past 24 hours, the most in one day since April.

As of Wednesday morning, some 177 schools had been closed due to outbreaks for the coronavirus. Schools, which were closed for two months during Israel’s near total lockdown, opened in mid-May.

Israel’s borders remain closed to non-citizens until at least July 1.


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