Despite mass vaccinations, Israel to return to COVID-19 restrictions, including "green pass" vaccine passport system
Israel's government has just approved bringing back certain Wuhan coronavirus (COVID-19) lockdown restrictions
. Among the restrictions is the use of a "green pass," or vaccine passport.
This vaccine passport allows fully vaccinated Israelis to ignore the new COVID-19 restrictions. But it does not give the same freedoms to Israelis who have recovered from previous COVID-19 infections and have developed a natural immunity to the virus.
Prime Minister Naftali Bennett said that the restrictions are necessary to prevent an even more extreme lockdown
in the near future.
"Our goal is to keep Israel open but not reach a situation where hospitals will say 'We're full,'" he said while touring a new mass vaccination center in Jerusalem. "We're seeking to avoid that, and know when to hit the brakes."
"To refrain from harsher restrictions, we'll get vaccinated, wear masks and maintain distancing," Bennett added. "The [post-vaccine] delta epidemic is extremely contagious and is spreading all over the world. Avoid crowds, and get vaccinated – now. Otherwise, there will be no choice but to impose more severe restrictions
, including a lockdown."
Bennett falsely believes that bringing the country's vaccination rate up will prevent future COVID-19 outbreaks. It should be noted that Israel is dealing with its post-vaccine surge in coronavirus cases while being the 14th most fully vaccinated nation on earth
Fifty-nine percent of the population of 9.3 million is already fully vaccinated, and another 11 percent has received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.
The Israeli government has blamed the rise in cases on the country's unvaccinated population. According to the government, about one million Israelis are eligible to get the experimental and side effect-riddled COVID-19 vaccines but refuse to do so.
But this explanation does not answer why so many people in Israel, including vaccinated individuals, continue to test positive for COVID-19. (Related: In Israel, the most vaccinated country in the world, HALF of all new "delta" infections are occurring in "fully vaccinated" people
On Monday, the country reported over 3,800 new cases and a positive test result rate of 3.78 percent. This is the highest count for both numbers since the beginning of March.
Seven people died on Monday, three less than those that died on Sunday. This is the country's highest recorded 48-hour death toll in four months.
The number of serious COVID-19 patients stood at 221, nine more than the previous day and 66 more than last week. Experts warned that the number of serious COVID-19 cases has been doubling every 10 days.
Green pass system ignores Israelis with natural immunity to COVID-19
Bennett announced the new COVID-19 restrictions on Tuesday, Aug. 3. One of the main restrictions imposed is the implementation of the green pass system, which becomes active on Sunday, Aug. 8.
According to the system, the green pass, or vaccine passport, is necessary to enter public venues that can hold fewer than 100 people. The unvaccinated must present negative COVID-19 tests if they wish to enter these same venues.
This green pass system does not consider the Israelis who have already recovered from COVID-19 and therefore have developed natural immunity to the virus. Nearly 855,000 Israelis
have already recovered from the coronavirus.
The government has also put into effect a mask mandate for everybody in outdoor gatherings.
Government offices are required to work with at least 50 percent of their personnel working from home. The private sector is strongly encouraged to do the same and allow at least 50 percent of their staff to work from their homes.
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Defense Benny Gantz said 1,000 reservists from the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) will be called up to support his ministry's activities related to enforcing pandemic restrictions.
Minister of Health Nitzan Horowitz said 500 medics of the IDF will be recruited to assist his ministry with its vaccination efforts.
Gantz and many other government ministers are attempting to coerce those on the fence about the dangerous COVID-19 vaccines
to get vaccinated. He warned that if they do not do so, the country will institute a full lockdown soon.
"We need to prepare the public and public opinion for a lockdown in September, which is a month in which the economic damage will be less, and accelerate the immunization effort to try to prevent it," said Gantz.
Learn more about the state of lockdowns and vaccination-related restrictions in Israel and other countries by reading the latest articles at Pandemic.news