Struggling to contain a second wave of the coronavirus, Israel's ministerial committee on handling the pandemic on Sunday decided to reinstate some of the earlier restrictions that had been lifted, in an attempt to slow the spread of the pathogen.
The measures were to be submitted for Knesset approval.
Ministers decided to once again restrict the number of people allowed to travel in a car to three, including the driver; extend a ban on more than 10 people at any indoor gatherings, including restaurants and synagogues, while outdoor meetings will be limited to no more than 20 people at a time.
Closures will also be reimposed on all nightclubs, bars, event halls, cultural venues, water parks and amusement parks.
Existing restrictions on public events, including conventions, parties, festivals and organized trips, will be extended until further notice.
In workplaces, employees will still have to maintain a distance of two meters, wear a mask, use their own personal equipment where possible, have meetings of no more than 15 participants and abide by other social distancing guidelines.
Regional health officials will also be empowered to close down any businesses found in violation of the directives.
Ministers also decided to task local municipalities with the responsibility of erecting signs in public areas reminding residents of social distancing regulations and the requirement to wear masks.
The Health Ministry will reportedly spend up to NIS 4 billion ($1.17 billion) over the next 18 months to attempt to meet an ambitious target of carrying out 60,000 daily CoVID-19 coronavirus tests, according to a ministry statement.
“I urge citizens, if you have a reason to be tested, do not hesitate," Health Mnister Yuli Edelstein said Sunday, according to the local media.
Israel’s coronavirus death toll edges near 600 while the number of patients in need of ventilators had seen a 25% increase in the past nine days.
Since the first coronavirus case in February, the country's infection tally stands at 82,515.
First published: 17:49 , 08.09.20