Israelis continue protests over Netanyahu alleged corruption, Covid-19 response

Anti-Netanyahu protesters put pressure on Israeli leader | News

Israelis continue protests over Netanyahu alleged corruption, Covid-19 response

A girl wearing a mask pushes a scooter on a pavement as Israeli authorities brought back some coronavirus disease (COVID-19) restrictions after the number of new cases jumped in what officials fear could herald a "second wave" of infections, in Elad, Israel June 24, 2020.

Netanyahu, who has faced increasing criticism over his handling of the coronavirus crisis, said he instructed his finance minister to come up with a new economic package to assist businesses hurt by the lockdown.

The announcement comes despite protests from part of the ultra-Orthodox contingent in government against a lockdown during the holidays.

Spain's cumulative incidence, a variable closely watched by epidemiologists, showed almost 240 coronavirus infections per 100,000 inhabitants in the past two weeks, the highest in Europe.

The Three-week lockdown will make Israel the first country to reimpose such stringent restrictions on a national scale.

The measures during the lockdown include: not having more than 10 people congregating indoors, while groups of 20 are permitted outside; schools and shopping centers will be closed; citizens cannot go beyond 500 meters from home except for traveling to work; and non-governmental businesses and offices can remain open but not take in patrons.

Israel's government announced it would impose a 3-week nationwide lockdown.

"I know these measures will exact a heavy price from all of us", Netanyahu said.

"If we keep the rules, and I am confident in this, we will defeat the virus".

Israel was initially successful at curbing the spread of the virus. The party won't be leaving the coalition, a spokesman said.

Hundreds of demonstrators rallied again on Sunday to call for Netanyahu's resignation over his alleged graft offences and failure to manage the Covid-19 crisis.

According to Johns Hopkins University's tracker, as of Sunday afternoon, Israel has approximately 154,000 confirmed coronavirus cases, including more than 1,108 deaths.

They blocked roads to Ben Gurion airport, from where Netanyahu was due to fly to the United States to attend the signing of agreements to normalise ties with Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates.

He said while cases are high, the country's coronavirus mortality numbers are lower than other countries with similar outbreaks.

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