Netanyahu says to seek third national lockdown within days
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is set on ordering the country into a third national lockdown to bring down spiraling coronavirus infections, and he wants the closure to start within the next few days, Channel 12 reported.
Aside from the climbing infection numbers, the prime minister was said to also be worried about the possible arrival of a mutated strain of the virus detected in countries abroad that, while not more lethal, is believed to be much more infectious, Times of Israel reported.
Netanyahu was reportedly holding consultations and was considering calling a meeting of the coronavirus cabinet for Monday so that the core ministers tasked with forming virus policy can debate the issue. Alternatively, Netanyahu was mulling bringing the lockdown plan directly to a specially convened full cabinet meeting, as only the broader panel of ministers has the authority to order a lockdown, the report said.
Two previous lockdowns, the first in April and the second in September, succeeded in dramatically bringing down infection rates at considerable economic cost, but the numbers rose after the restrictions were rolled back.