Netanyahu warns lockdown restrictions may be reimposed amid spike in Covid cases
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Netanyahu warns lockdown restrictions may be reimposed amid spike in Covid cases

Israeli prime minister said: 'If we don’t immediately change our behaviour, we will bring upon ourselves, against our will, a return to lockdown'

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, center, wearing a face mask in line with public health restrictions due to the coronavirus pandemic . (Ronen Zvulun/ Pool Photo via AP)
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, center, wearing a face mask in line with public health restrictions due to the coronavirus pandemic . (Ronen Zvulun/ Pool Photo via AP)

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has warned Israelis that lockdown rules may need to be reinstated after the country saw a significant rise in Covid-19 cases.

Israel, which went into lockdown early, has more than 20,000 confirmed cases of the coronavirus and 305 deaths, but the welcome downward trend now appears to have been reversed, with 300 new infections in recent days.

Netanyahu suggested that the new cases were a result of Israelis not adhering to rules brought in to protect people from transmission.

“If we don’t immediately change our behaviour regarding wearing [face] masks and keeping distance, we will bring upon ourselves, against our will, a return to lockdown,” he said on Sunday.  “None of us wants this.”

With countries’ attentions turn to track-and-trace systems, many are looking at Israel, whose government was one of the first to introduce controversial phone tracking when it directed internal intelligence agency Shin Bet in March to monitor the mobile phones of people suspected or confirmed as having coronavirus.

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