Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu appeals to Israelis “to make sacrifices” and alter their daily routines to help stem the spread of Covid-19. Schools and universities will remain open.
”We are in a global pandemic. I ask you, other countries that did not take the steps that we have taken are in a very difficult slide. We are safeguarding the country well but we need to effect behavioral changes so that we can continue to safeguard ourselves well and get through this crisis. Do not gather. We are artificially limiting this to closed places of over 100 people,” said israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, as he announced a new directive aimed at fighting coronavirus.
Speaking at a press conference in Jerusalem with Israeli Health Minister Yaakov Litzman, Netanyahu also urged Israelis to alter their daily routines to mitigate the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Schools and universities would remain open for the time being, he said, but will have to abide by various restrictions that would be announced as early as Thursday.
Netanyahu, who played a video visualizing the impact of a sneeze on one’s surroundings, appealed to Israelis: “Please change your daily routines, avoid handshakes, make sure to wash your hands and maintain personal hygiene. Use a tissue when you sneeze.”
“We ask that people don’t hold conferences and events if they don’t have to,” he added.
Health Ministry Director General Moshe Bar Siman Tov said, “We call on employers to let more and more employers work from home,” adding that “anyone who has fever or any symptoms should self-quarantine.”
According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, COVID-19 symptoms include fever, cough and shortness of breath.
Netanyahu said that Israel was in good shape relatively speaking, with only 82 confirmed cases as of Wednesday, in part because Israel made swift decisions right at the start of the outbreak.
“I have talked with health officials from around the world, who praised our response,” he said.
”I also spoke today with Dr. Deborah Birx, who is responsible for the war on the pandemic in the US. She praised our organization and she speaks with many countries. I also spoke with the Indian Prime Minister, my friend Narendra Modi. We also depend on supply lines and we are working with other countries. We are in contact with them all the time.”