Israel news summary

Israel News for 3-11-2020

News Update

To listen to an audio version click here. (for supporters)

PM Netanyahu announced that the government will provide NIS 10 billion of “first aid” primarily in the form of loans to businesses and a cash injection into the healthcare system. The PM said financial support for the aviation industry, including El Al, will be in addition to the aid package.

As of today, 76 Israelis have been infected with the coronavirus and tens of thousands are in self-quarantine.

Israel has taken some of the most stringent steps by any nation to counter the virus, now requiring that any person entering the country must spend 14 days in isolation. Travelers who cannot prove they have somewhere to spend the two-week quarantine period are denied entry to the country. Ministry of Finance Chief Economist Shira Greenberg estimates that the move will cost the economy NIS 4.3 billion monthly in lost production. The cumulative economic damage from quarantining up to now is estimated at NIS 1 billion.
The Health Ministry tightened its restrictions on the number of participants in public events, further reducing the maximum attendance allowed from 5,000 people to 2,000 people, while also urging the public to reconsider holding mass gatherings of any kind. The ministry also advises the public to refrain from visiting hospitals, nursing homes or any other location where senior citizens may be found.
The Israel Police announced that it will receive all information on Israelis returning to the country to assist its units in enforcing the mandatory 14-day home quarantine for all arrivals from overseas. The Police and the Health Ministry have set up designated task forces, consisting of police officers and health inspectors, to prevent quarantine violations.
El Al announced that it plans to place 80% of its 6,300 employees on unpaid leave. Delta Airlines announced yesterday that it is suspending all operations between New York’s JFK International Airport and Ben-Gurion Airport from March 14 to March 24.