Corona Virus Update
Date: September, 17th 2020.
It has been all over the media: Israel is the first country worldwide to go into a second lock-down. Due to the high infection rate, Israeli government follows the recommendation of the ministry of health and takes drastic measures during the high Jewish holidays in the upcoming three weeks. In this article, we explain the meaning of the lock down but stress right in the beginning: Some rules are unclear, government announce to publish further information to certain rules and other rules seem to contradict each other.
The lock-down starts tomorrow, Friday, 18.09.20 at 13:00 (14:00 in Israel) and will last until 11.10.20.
Schools, kindergartens and nurseries remain closed during lockdowns.
Authorities will still operate, but with reduced opening hours. Courts will operate normally in the upcoming three weeks. Please note that due to Jewish holidays, the opening hours of authorities are reduced anyway.
No shop or business must receive clients. Stores, hairdresser, beauty parlors and gyms, hotels, bars, cinemas, theaters etc. have to shut down. Restaurant must not serve guests, but deliver food.
In general, it is still allowed to work at the office or the usual workplace, provided no clients are received.
Gatherings are allowed to a maximum of 10 people.
Traveling is caped to 500 meters from one’s home. With the lock down, you can, with certain exceptions, only go as far as 500 m away from your home. Violation threatens a fine.
The exceptions to the 500 meters rule include:
Commute to the place of work and back.
Shopping for groceries, medicines and other essentials.
A maximum of 3 people (driver + 2 passengers) are allowed in cars.
Despite contrary considerations by the Ministry of Health, the following applies: The international airport will remain open during the lock down. Please note: The following still applies: If you are not an Israeli citizen or have a settlement permit, you need a special permit in order to be allowed into the country.
Quarantine obligation upon entry:
The Israeli Ministry of Health is constantly updating the list of so-called “green countries”. Anyone entering Israel from such a country and staying in a green country during the 14 days prior to arrival in Israel is not subject to quarantine on arrival in Israel. Entrants from “red countries” have to go into quarantine immediately after entry.
Germany, Austria and Italy are currently on the green list, but Switzerland is not yet.
The Israeli government has drawn up a 3-phase plan to hopefully return to normal soon. The first step in the plan is the lock down, which begins tomorrow (Sept. 18th 2020). The second step is based on the traffic light scheme: According to this, cities are divided into 4 categories based on their infection rate, from green with a low infection rate, yellow with medium, orange with high and red with very high infection rate. The easing of the lock down is then granted for the different areas depending on the infection rate. In red cities with a particularly high infection rate, the area can be cordoned off and further restrictions can be issued.
The lock down is to be gradually relaxed until, in the end, the entire national territory can be classified as green according to the traffic light method.
Very little is clear at the moment, especially the planned time frame for the measures and what their consequences will be.