Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett said, on Sunday, that the fifth wave of the Coronavirus had begun, calling on his citizens to prepare.
This came in his speech during the weekly session of the Israeli government, which was devoted to discussing the increase in infections with the new Corona mutant known as “Omicron”.
The Hebrew newspaper Yedioth Ahronoth quoted Bennett as saying: “Time is running out. Omicron has already infiltrated Israel. There are already infections within the community, and we are already seeing an increase in infection rates.”
He added that his government “saved Israel valuable time when it imposed restrictions on entry to the country through Ben Gurion Airport, which delayed Omicron.”
However, Bennett added, “Because of the highly contagious nature of this mutant, the collective and national protection provided by the state is insufficient.”
He continued, “Every citizen must ensure that he is vaccinated with three doses of the vaccine and that his children have been vaccinated (…) The fifth wave has arrived, and every family must prepare.”
In a related context, the “Constitution Committee” in the Knesset (Parliament) approved the recommendations of the Ministry of Health to include 7 new countries in the list of red countries (experiencing an outbreak of the virus).
The new list included the United Arab Emirates, Ireland, Norway, Spain, Finland, France, and Sweden.
And the decision to ban travel to these countries will enter from midnight Sunday / Monday, according to the same source.
It is expected that the government will add the United States of America to these countries later on Sunday, after the Ministry of Health said that it had diagnosed the infection of 17 of its returnees with the Omicron mutated.
And Israel has previously banned travel to 50 countries, mostly on the African continent, in addition to Denmark and the United Kingdom, and declared them red countries.
The number of people infected with Omicron in Israel reached 137, in addition to 386 cases of strong suspicion of infection with the highly contagious mutant, according to the Ministry of Health.
And on Sunday, the Ministry of Health said that it had recorded 372 new cases of corona in Israel, out of 35,452 examinations that had been conducted.
She added that among the injured, 81 were described as serious, including 39 patients connected to artificial respirators.