The malls have closed in Israel. As of March 15, 2020 and recent regs passed to hinder the spread of COVID-19, better known as the coronavirus, so have all Israel’s gyms, public swimming pools, discos, bars, restaurants, movie theaters, heritage sites and hotels. Public transportation remains functioning but Israel’s Health Ministry has urged the public to avoid it.
Schools and universities have closed as well. Assemblies of more than ten people anywhere is forbidden (20 people may meet if they stand at least 2 meters apart). All visitors to Israel are required to spend two weeks in “home quarantine.”
Three days before the announcement of Israel’s unprecedented hygiene measures, I hopped a bus from my home to Jerusalem’s popular Malcha Mall. It was clear from the outset that Israelis had already begun to take precautions against the spread of the virus. Seats at the front of the bus, normally reserved for seniors, were cordoned off, ostensibly to limit the driver’s exposure to passengers’ germs. Some people aboard wore masks. Vehicle traffic was sparse. No one on board dared cough.[Read more…]
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