Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu announced on Monday night that the government was set to impose a curfew from 5 p.m. Tuesday to 5 a.m. Thursday in its latest measure to contain the coronavirus.
“It is mandatory to stay within the immediate vicinity of one’s home, not traveling from one neighborhood to another and certainly not between cities,” Netanyahu said. “The bakeries and chametz departments in supermarkets will open Thursday morning and we will be deploying police to prevent crowds from forming.”
In his broadcast speech on Monday night, Netanyahu included a warning against overly optimistic recovery scenarios in the light of the South Korean experience.
“I want to share with you one statistic that the South Korean government has released in the last few days,” he said. “One hundred ninety-one people who were thought to have made a complete recovery tested positive again. If this is true, the reality is far more complex than we thought. It’s only natural and human [to want to get back to normal life] but in the coronavirus war there is no choice.”
“Israel ranks as one of the safest places in the world in terms of the number of people infected. We have seen increases of up to 22% in the number of people contracting the virus from day to day; today, the increase was just 4%. But if we loosen the regulations too soon, we will pay a heavy price.”
As of Monday evening, the Health Ministry said there are 11,586 confirmed cases of the coronavirus in Israel, with 116 fatalities, an increase of 13 over the last 24-hour period, matching the highest single-day death toll.
183 people are reportedly in serious condition and 132 of them on ventilators, about the same as on Sunday.
The Cabinet was scheduled to vote on the new measures at a teleconference at 10:30 p.m.