Police to Keep Hands Off Wedding Halls

Dancing at a chuppah in Giv’at Ze’ev, outside Yerushalayim. (Flash90).

Despite the government’s repeated stress on stricter enforcement of coronavirus restrictions, police will not intrude on weddings at event halls, The Times of Israel reported on Monday.

Public Security Minister Omer Barlev said police will check that the health rules are observed at weddings, but “there is no intention for police and inspectors to break into halls and forcibly remove revelers.”

The new so-called “Revelry Pass” will require events with over 100 participants to ensure all are vaccinated, recovered or tested negative for the coronavirus.

“I want to say here clearly: Government decisions are not recommendations; they are binding. Whoever flouts them will pay,” the premier said in a statement from the Prime Minister’s Office.

Those found without a mask in required venues will be liable of a fine of up to NIS 500 (approximately $150). Owners of event halls who flout the rules will be subject to NIS 5,000 ($1,500) fines.

“Wearing a mask indoors is a requirement, not a recommendation. From Wednesday, only those who have been vaccinated or have recovered or have a negative test will be able to attend [mass] events — this is a requirement, not a recommendation. Keeping quarantine is a requirement, not a recommendation,” Bennett said. “These are a citizen’s duties.”

Ministers decided on Sunday that criminal indictments would be filed against those deliberate quarantine scofflaws, and that the time allotted for payment of fines will be less than in the past. According to media reports, however, almost no Israelis were actually forced to pay fines during the pandemic.

Updated Monday, July 19, 2021 at 11:45 am .