The Israeli government imposed lockdowns on nearly a dozen neighborhoods in five different cities across the country Friday afternoon.
Beginning at 1:00 p.m. Friday, police sealed off neighborhoods in Jerusalem, Beit Shemesh, Lod, Ramle, and Kiryat Malachi.
The closures, which severely limit movement into and out of the affected neighborhoods, is set to last one week, ending next Friday at 8:00 a.m. Business operation will also be severely limited in the affected areas.
The affected neighborhoods include the Romema, Kiryat Sanz, Belz, and Mattersdorf neighborhoods in Jerusalem; the neighborhoods of Nahala V’Menucha and Kaneh HaBossem in Beit Shemesh; Lod’s Ganei Ya’ar and Sach neighorhoods; the Amidar-Bilu neighborhood in Ramle; and the Ahuzat Rotner and Chabad neighborhoods in Kiryat Malachi.
In addition, the partial restrictions on three Lod neighborhoods - Harakevet, Shanir, and Neve Shalom - will be extended for five extra days, ending on Wednesday at 8:00 a.m.
Jerusalem Mayor Moshe Leon criticized the decision to impose lockdowns on parts of the capital, saying the “solution to the coronavirus pandemic is to isolate the sick people.”
“But the minute you impose a lockdown, it causes mass infection. These people will go out and infect whoever is in the neighborhood.”
“I requested that I be given the tools to evacuate the carriers to [coronavirus] hotels until they recover,” Leon told Reshet Bet.
“Infected people should not be staying at home. You can close whatever you want, but how long can you keep that going? Business owners are saying that it’s better to get infected by the coronavirus than to suffer the economic blow. Before you start closing neighborhoods, I want to hear some logic.”