Another Israeli has tested positive for the COVID-19 virus, the sixteenth case in the country, the Health Ministry announced on Thursday.
The man, a 38-year-old resident of East Jerusalem who works as a tour bus driver, has been probably exposed to the pathogen while transporting a group of 21 Greek travelers who recently returned from a pilgrimage to religious sites in Israel and have tested positive for the virus. The bus driver has also been in contact with tourists from Spain and Germany.
He arrived at the Baruch Padeh Medical Center in Tiberias after feeling ill where he was diagnosed with pneumonia and put in an isolated unit. His condition is stable and he is fully conscious.
Also Thursday, Israel Police announced it will begin to crack down on citizens who violate the Health Ministry's directives, which were designed to stem the spread of the virus.
Police said it has opened eight criminal investigations against Israelis who have violated the state’s home quarantine rules or misled health ministry inspectors.
“Israel Police will work in cooperation with the state prosecution in order to bring to justice anyone who chooses to ignore the Health Ministry instructions and endanger, with their actions — whether through negligence or intentionally — raising the dangers of the spread of the coronavirus,” a police official said.
According to police, those who violate the state's directives could face up to seven years in prison.