by Maayan Jaffe-Hoffman
Culture and leisure spaces to close down as COVID-19 patients near 200.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu gestures as he delivers a speech at his Jerusalem office, regarding the new measures that will be taken to fight the coronavirus, March 14, 2020
(photo credit: GALI TIBBON POOL/REUTERS)
Netanyahu said that he had been given the green light by the Justice Ministry to use Intelligence tracking tools to digitally monitor coronavirus patients without asking them, which the prime minister admitted Saturday night infringes on personal privacy. But he argued that by using these means, “we will be able to see who they were with, what happened before and after [they were infected], and we will be able to isolate the coronavirus and not the entire country.
"We are one of the few countries with this capability, and we will use it,” he said. "We must do everything, as a government and as citizens, to not become infected and not to infect others.”
As the number of coronavirus patients in the country neared 200 at press time, the government rolled out further restrictions that would go into effect Sunday morning. Kindergartens, nurseries and daycares and all recreational and leisure establishments will close. Workplaces will remain open, but staff will be asked to work from home. Gatherings will be limited to no more than 10 people.
And the prime minister stressed the importance of personal hygiene and that people stay a minimum of two meters apart from one another.
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