Electronic Supervision Approved for Quarantined Individuals

YERUSHALAYIM -
Israeli police officers on patrol at Ben Gurion airport to enforce the COVID-19 regulations. (Avshalom Sassoni/Flash90)

The Knesset’s Constitution Committee on Tuesday approved a measure mandating electronic supervision of all Israelis under quarantine directives. The new rule will not apply solely to residents returning from trips abroad.

The measure is to go into effect at midnight Tuesday and remain in effect until Oct. 12.

Those who refuse to follow the new measure will be subject to increased police oversight, the committee said.

Meanwhile, Health Ministry Director General Prof. Nachman Ash said that individuals vaccinated abroad – both Israeli or foreign citizens – can be released from isolation when they enter the country, provided that they meet the criteria set by the Health Ministry and they undergo a serological test in Israel.

“Indeed, they can be released by telephone, under the same conditions of anyone who is vaccinated with a third shot or two vaccines administered not more than half a year earlier, provided that they do a serological test,” Ash told the Constitution Committee, responding to a question by MK Rabbi Uri Maklev (UTJ). “Anyone who does a serological examination can be discharged already today.”

Since the ministry published the new guidelines about isolation for travelers entering Israel – which came into effect on Sept. 3 – the status of individuals vaccinated abroad has remained unclear.

According to the guidelines, incoming passengers who are a week after receiving a third shot, or have been vaccinated or recovered within the previous six months, or have recovered and also received one shot, can be exempt from quarantine.

Israeli borders have been mostly closed to foreigners since the beginning of the pandemic. However, both Israelis living abroad and certain categories of foreign nationals – including vaccinated first-degree relatives of Israelis – have been able to apply for and receive permission to enter the country.

At the moment, Israel does not recognize any foreign vaccination or recovery documentation.

Noncitizens who want to enter the country have to present their certificates in order to receive the permission required to enter, but once in Israel, if they want to be considered immunized, they need to undergo a private serological test to prove the presence of antibodies.