Israel intends to ease some lockdown restrictions on Sunday, the government has announced, following a four-week national shutdown seeking to stall what was one of the world’s worst coronavirus outbreaks.
The Prime Minister’s Office said in a statement that as of Sunday:
- Companies that have no in-person customers can open.
- Daycares and nurseries for children aged 0 to 6 can restart.
- National parks and beaches will reopen.
- Restrictions of leaving one’s home or hosting people are lifted, as long as gatherings do no exceed 10 people inside and 20 people outside.
The statement warned that the restrictions could be reimposed if the infection rate, currently around 2,000 per day, increase. It added that areas with very high transmission rates may not be included under the new rules.
With schools, bars, and most shops remaining closed, Israel intends to exit the second national lockdown cautiously, after an overzealous reopening in the spring saw infection rates spiral.
Britons are waking up to a continued stand-off between the government in London and local authority leaders in the north of England over the prime minister’s flagship policy for tackling the coronavirus in England.
Those plans have descended into chaos after mayors and MPs from the north-west of England emphatically rejected being moved into the highest lockdown, with talks continuing late into the night.
Fresh efforts to reach an agreement will continue today as scientists and health experts look on with dismay.
Elsewhere in the UK
• New Covid-19 restrictions are due to coming to force in Northern Ireland, where an extended break for school children also begins today.
• Extended ‘circuit break’ type restrictions are due to be announced in the next few days in Wales
• New rules have come into force in Scotland to extend the mandatory wearing of face coverings, which will now be required in workplace settings such as canteens.
While ministers could still unilaterally impose a lockdown in England, they believe local leaders’ cooperation is crucial in communicating and enforcing the restrictions.
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