Austrian Chancellor speaks to Netanyahu about second COVID-19 wave

Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz says he and Israeli PM "had a good call" on how to best cope with second wave of COVID-19.

Ben Ariel ,

Netanyahu and Kurz
Netanyahu and Kurz
Avi Ohayon/GPO

Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz said on Sunday he had spoken with Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu amid a second wave of coronavirus in his country.

"Just had a good call with Prime Minister Netanyahu of Israel on how to best cope with the second wave of COVID-19. We will continue to stay in close contact," he said.

On Saturday, Kurz announced a return to tougher anti-coronavirus restrictions, including shutting schools and non-essential shops, to contain the second wave of the virus.

The new restrictions will be in effect starting Tuesday and until December 6.

Vienna imposed a partial lockdown including a nighttime curfew from 8:00 p.m. at the start of November, but that has done little to help, as the country has seen 831 confirmed cases per million inhabitants over the past seven days.

This is not the first time that Kurz has sought Netanyahu’s advice on dealing with the virus. Earlier this year, he revealed that it was a phone call from Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu that made him act to curb the virus.

“I contacted Bibi Netanyahu and he told me his opinion, that several countries in Europe aren’t doing enough and that he is concerned that Europe isn’t treating the problem as it should,” Kurz told Israel’s Kan 11 News in an interview.

“This, of course, caused us to treat the issue more firmly and quickly make decisions. I thank Bibi Netanyahu for the conversation we held a few weeks ago which led to the fact that we were the first to respond in Europe,” added the Chancellor.



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