A senior Likud official said on Tuesday that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu blames Alternate Prime Minister Benny Gantz and his Blue & White Party of blocking the necessary measures to rein in the spread of coronavirus due to political concerns.
"Blue & White's recklessness will definitely lead us to general lockdown and unnecessary economic costs. Today, Gantz opposed each and every measure to stop the spread of coronavirus that could have prevented the next general lockdown," said the Likud official.
"Gantz and Blue & White have to stop their political game in issues related to coronavirus. That puts Israeli citizens' lives at risk. Since the unity government requires both Likud and Blue & White to agree on decisions, they sabotage every decision that does not match their populist agenda."
A senior official in Blue & White responded to Netanyahu's remarks and called on the premier to stop shifting the blame for the handling of the epidemic and delegate duties to the military and Defense Ministry.
"Netanyahu must let the IDF and Defense Ministry lead the battle from the ground," said the official. "This is not the time for politics or anything else besides rebuilding the economy, healthcare system, and society."
Netanyahu's words come as a response to Gantz' rejection of a National Security Council suggestion to impose far-reaching restrictions if the rise in infections continues in the coming days.
Some of the options presented were a prohibition on gatherings of more than 10 people; closure of synagogues, beaches, public swimming pools, and gyms; among others.
Gantz deemed it was not right for the government "to make decisions about additional restrictions before two weeks have passed since the last restrictions were introduced and we have examined their effect."