Police checkpoint in Bnei Brak
Police checkpoint in Bnei BrakPolice spokesperson

The Ministerial Committee for the definition of "restricted areas" decided Thursday afternoon to declare neighborhoods in the Israeli Arab towns Rahat and Arara an-Naqab in the Negev as restricted areas under emergency regulations, following a renewed outbreak of the coronavirus in these neighborhoods.

In addition, the director-general of the Health Ministry signed an order regarding the Ajami, Hisachon, and Tzahalon neighborhoods in Jaffa. The order declares that all educational institutions will be closed in these neighborhoods except for matriculation exams, and gatherings of more than ten people will be banned.

The decisions will take effect tomorrow morning at 8 AM and last until 8 AM on Wednesday morning.

Prior to recommending that the neighborhoods be declared restricted areas, the Health Ministry worked with the relevant authorities to reduce morbidity through informing residents, enforcing social distancing restrictions, and evacuating patients as much as possible. These steps proved insufficient to stop the spread of the disease in these areas. The ministry hopes that the implementation of the restricted area order in addition to these steps will have the desire effect.

Earlier, Prime Minister Netanyahu warned that the government may impose a second lockdown in Israel if Israelis fail to adhere to social distancing requirements