PM Bennett: The holiday season depends on how many people vaccinate

PM Bennett goes live on Facebook, answers users' questions. 'A quarter of a million adults received a 3rd dose of coronavirus vaccine, my predecessor wanted to wait for FDA approval.'

Ido Ben Porat ,

Naftali Bennett
Naftali Bennett
Yonatan Sindel/Flash90

For the first time since taking office, Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett went live on Facebook, fielding questions from surfers and journalists.

In the live video, Bennett said, "We are facing Iranian terror. Iran brought down a Ukrainian plane, and now fired at a civilian ship and killed a British [civilian] and Romanian [civilian]. That is terror against world transportation routes. They are trying, and succeeding, in enveloping Israel in octupus-like arms, which harm civilians and soldiers. We are entering the battlefield, in order to push the octopus off of us."

"The government works in an efficient and goal-oriented fashion. I have been in governments and cabinets for ten years, and I can say that this is the most efficient government I've seen," he added.

Regarding whether there will be a lockdown over the holidays, Bennett said: "The future of the holidays depends on the number of people getting vaccinated. Go get vaccinated."

Taking a stab at former Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Bennett added: "A quarter of a million elderly received a third dose of the vaccine; my predecessor wanted to wait for FDA approval."

Netanyahu and his wife Sara received their third doses of the vaccine on Friday, the first day it became available to everyone over age 60.

Bennett emphasized, "Around the world, the Delta plague is spreading wildly. It's a different plague, the Delta virus has a higher viral load, a thousand times more viral particles in the body than the regular coronavirus plague. The chance of infection is very great. We need to go out and get vaccinated, and wear masks. If two people wear their masks, it reduces the chance of infection by 98%. Wear your masks, we want to be finished with this thing."

When asked about Foreign Minister Yair Lapid's (Yesh Atid) absence from the Coronavirus Cabinet meetings, Bennett said: "The coronavirus discussions are held in a very orderly and effective manner. The Foreign Minister, Finance Minister, and myself work in complete coordination, including on coronavirus issues."

Regarding rumors that there is a lack of vaccines, Bennett said: "We constantly ensure that there is a supply of vaccines, to many locations around the country where people can go and get vaccinated. There are two sectors which need to go and get vaccinated: The first is the elderly sector, over age sixty, which is at very high risk, and the second group is the younger people. When you don't get vaccinated, you endanger yourselves and also everyone around you. This is a selfish, unworthy, and irresponsible act. No one wants to kill people by mistake."

When asked why those returning from abroad are required to quarantine, he said: "People who are returning from abroad represent a not-insignificant percentage, 10%, of those infected. We don't want them to increase the infection rate inside the country, and we're concerned about new variants. It could be that tomorrow there will be a variant that's a lot more contagious or a lot more deadly or a lot harder to catch, and therefore everyone is required to quarantine."

Bennett also said that the plan for the new school year is expected to be approved next week.

"In elementary schools, a child who is confirmed to have coronavirus will be sent into quarantine, and the other children will be checked every day in order to allow them to continue learning," he explained.



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