Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has decided to re-enter precautionary quarantine on Thursday after Israeli Health Minister Yaakov Litzman, a leading member of the ultra-Orthodox Jewish community, tested positive for COVID-19.
Netanyahu first quarantined himself after one of his staff tested positive for the virus.
As of this posting, 6,200 Israelis had been infected, the majority of whom are Orthodox church members who contracted the virus most likely during cramped religious services.
About 20 Israelis had died from the coronavirus disease, including a 14-year-old whose passing proved to that COVID-19 can prove fatal even to young people.
Ultra-Orthodox enclaves have become hotspots for the virus after rabbis initially ignored and preached against government’s orders to limit synagogue attendance.
But there had been “a very positive change among the ultra-Orthodox public,” Netanyahu said, adding people have by now “well internalized the danger of the spread of the coronavirus”.
Netanyahu ordered the sick from Bnei Brak to be taken away to hotels in the country for quarantine, aside from asking the public to wear face masks in public.
“If you do not have a mask, use a scarf or any other face covering that will reduce the spread of the virus to others,” he said.