Coronavirus test swab
Coronavirus test swab iStock

20 new coronavirus cases were recorded in Palestinian Authority-assigned areas of Judea and Samaria on Friday, bringing the total number in the PA to 815, Xinhua reports.

The PA “health minister”, Mai al-Kaila, said in an emailed statement that 18 cases were found in the city of Hebron, one in Bethlehem and one in Shechem (Nablus).

So far, 575 patients have recovered from the virus, while the death toll still stood at five, she added.

In light of the rising number of infections, PA health authorities have warned that a second wave of the novel coronavirus has begun, urging the public to follow the government's instructions.

"Infections increased following our attempt to bring Palestine to normal daily life to balance economy and health. But unfortunately, the medical protocol was not implemented," explained al-Kaila.

She called on Palestinian Arabs to abide by social distancing and wearing gloves and facemasks, "which should be a basic and important part of their daily life."

Both the Palestinian Authority in Judea and Samaria and Hamas authorities in Gaza recently eased most of the precautionary measures against coronavirus.

Mosques, churches, restaurants, hotels, cafes, wedding halls, and public parks and gardens were opened after a complete lockdown for around three months.

However, PA chairman Mahmoud Abbas recently issued a decree that extends the status of emergency in Judea and Samaria for another month.

Abbas initially announced a month-long state of emergency in March, after the first seven cases of coronavirus were identified in Bethlehem. He extended the state of emergency in early May.

(Arutz Sheva’s North American desk is keeping you updated until the start of Shabbat in New York. The time posted automatically on all Arutz Sheva articles, however, is Israeli time.)