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Israel has still not published its full list of how it will tighten its lockdown. However, local media are reporting the following measures might be adopted on Friday:
- Nearly all public transportation will be closed.
- Fewer businesses will be allowed to operate.
- Special education facilities that had remained open will be shut.
- Protests will be limited to groups of up to 20 people, and Israelis will no longer be allowed to travel more than 1km from home to participate in one. The prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, has faced months of demonstrations.
- Synagogues will be shut but allowed to open on Yom Kippur, the holiest day of the year in Judaism.
- The country’s main airport, Ben-Gurion international, will stop all departures.
- The stricter lockdown will last until the end of the Jewish High Holidays on 11 October. Netanyahu has said he chose to enforce the restrictions over the holiday period to lessen the impact on businesses, as many would normally be closed.
“We reached a decision to pull the handbrake,” deputy health minister Yoav Kisch said on Israel Radio about the cabinet decision.
Having imposed a three-week lockdown on Friday, Israel infection rates have surged. On Wednesday, the health minister reported close to 7,000 new virus cases, more than double the number of daily cases compared with the beginning of the month.
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