Roni Ben-Ari and Yonatan Meushar dance as they get married at Ein   Hemed Forest Wedding Venue,which is offering free, small scale   ceremonies for young couples whose marriages cannot take place due to coronavirus restrictions
A couple dance as they get married at an empty venue during the pandemic
Photo: Reuters
The so-called coronavirus cabinet

Israel limits most gatherings to 50 people amid accelerating virus spread

Restrictions apply to houses of worship, funerals and circumcisions while weddings can have up to 250 people until July 9; cultural venues can host 250 attendees with social distancing; panel rejects call for ban on dancing at wedding celebrations

Itamar Eichner |
Published: 06.29.20 , 17:08
Amid a soaring number of coronavirus patients, Israel's ministerial committee to deal with the pandemic on Monday unanimously accepted a Health Ministry recommendation to limit most social gatherings to just 50 people.
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  • Exempted from this restriction are cultural events and venues, such as concerts and museums, which can host up to 250 people at one time with social distancing.
    The ministerial panel, known as the coronavirus cabinet, also approved a call for students to take tests remotely.
    קבינט הקורונהקבינט הקורונה
    The so-called coronavirus cabinet
    (Photo: GPO)
    The 50-person limit on gatherings also applies to circumcisions and funerals, as well as to congregations at places of worship.
    All weddings, however, can include up to 250 people until July 9. After that and until July 31, only open-air facilities will be able to hold up to 250 people and indoor halls will be limited to just 100 people.
    Higher Education Minister Ze'ev Elkin (Likud) suggested at the meeting that instead of reducing the number of people at events, a ban on dancing could be implemented.
    Tourism Minister Assaf Zamir (Blue & White) said that this would not be feasible and ministers decided that a dance ban would remain a recommendation, pending a future decision.
    Roni Ben-Ari and Yonatan Meushar dance as they get married at Ein   Hemed Forest Wedding Venue,which is offering free, small scale   ceremonies for young couples whose marriages cannot take place due to coronavirus restrictions Roni Ben-Ari and Yonatan Meushar dance as they get married at Ein   Hemed Forest Wedding Venue,which is offering free, small scale   ceremonies for young couples whose marriages cannot take place due to coronavirus restrictions
    Roni Ben-Ari and Yonatan Meushar dance as they get married at an empty venue in Israel during the coronavirus outbreak
    (Photo: Reuters)
    During the meeting, Defense Minister Benny Gantz called for the operational side of dealing with the pandemic to be transferred to the Defense Ministry.
    "The Health Ministry should have overall responsibility and the execution should be handled by the Defense Ministry and the [IDF] Home Front Command, which have the best tools - from hotels to direct contact with all authorities," he said.

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