Travellers from Israel to UK won’t have to quarantine for 14 days
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Travellers from Israel to UK won’t have to quarantine for 14 days

UK government announces move which will come into effect from 4am on Saturday, leading to rust on flights so families can be reunited after months of separation

Strictly-Orthodox travellers arrive at Tel Aviv's Ben Gurion International Airport   (Credit Image: © Nir Alon/ZUMA Wire)
Strictly-Orthodox travellers arrive at Tel Aviv's Ben Gurion International Airport (Credit Image: © Nir Alon/ZUMA Wire)

Travellers arriving in England from Israel will not have to quarantine for 14 days from 4am on Saturday, the Government has announced, sparking a rush for flights from Jewish families who have not seen each other in months.

The announcement was made on Thursday by Transport Secretary Grant Shapps as he issued the weekly travel corridor update.

In its travel advisory, the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development (FCDO) said it “no longer advises [British citizens] against all but essential travel to Israel, and no longer advises against all but essential travel to Jerusalem, including to East Jerusalem.

“Israel, and Jerusalem are both now on the list of countries and territories where self-isolation is not required on return to England, Wales, and Northern Ireland.”

At the end of September, with infection rates once again rising sharply, the Israeli government passed legislation to impose a strict second national lockdown, including keeping some children out of school.

The results are now beginning to show in the infection rates, but tensions nevertheless remain high, Israeli media reporting a “stormy” meeting of ministers earlier this week to discuss how to ease the lockdown.

The controversial law introduced six weeks ago allowed the government to declare a state of emergency and restrict Israelis’ right to protest. It proved politically convenient, swiftly ending three months of embarrassing weekly street demonstrations against the prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

After Shapps’ announcement Jewish family reunions were being planned. Many Israeli family members who had planned to visit England for the High Holy Days stayed away because of the 14-day quarantine requirement upon landing.

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