Report: Health Ministry Mulls Lockdown for Tishrei Chagim

YERUSHALAYIM -
A border policeman stands guard at an entrance road to Bnei Brak during the lockdown in April.  (Reuters/Ammar Awad)

Looking ahead to the chagim in Tishrei, the Health Ministry is leaning toward a reinstatement of the closure it placed for Pesach of this year, Yisrael Hayom reported.

While senior Health Ministry officials speaking with the newspaper said that no final decision has been made, and the numbers of new confirmed cases over the next few weeks would determine policy for the beginning of 5781, until after Sukkos, they noted that: “the prevailing assessment right now is that there will be no alternative other than to issue orders to celebrate Rosh Hashanah with the nuclear family alone.”

The officials based their assessment on the current spreading of coronavirus in Israel and the rest of the world, “as well as on information and warnings from other nations and the World Health Organization regarding the next few months.”

Another factor is recent data showing that most corona patients contracted the virus at home or at family events.

“Family holiday celebrations can include as many as dozens of relatives, some of whom are elderly and considered at high risk should they contract coronavirus,” the health-care officials explained.

Another option in advance of the chagim is for the government to limit its involvement to PR about the need to celebrate with immediate family only in order to prevent the spread of the virus, but will not officially restrict travel, as it did during Pesach.