Israel’s official delegation to Washington for the signing of peace accords with the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain was allowed a lowered coronavirus quarantine time of solely 5 days, however failed to keep up agreed-upon well being pointers throughout the journey, in response to a report Wednesday.
The settlement to permit the delegation to solely quarantine for 5 days and never 14 as usually required for vacationers from the US, got here after in depth wrangling between well being officers and journey organizers, Haaretz reported.
Delegation organizers had sought a whole waiving of quarantine for the delegation, regardless of the US’s excessive an infection fee, the paper reported, citing unnamed sources within the Well being Ministry.
“There was some shouting” over the matter, a ministry supply mentioned, however finally it was agreed that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and people who accompanied him on the journey would stay in quarantine till Monday solely.
The settlement included a dedication by the delegation to keep up mask-wearing and distance between people.
Nonetheless, a senior well being official advised the newspaper the delegation had not lived as much as the discount all through the White Home ceremony — with delegation members packed collectively within the viewers and plenty of eschewing masks. Netanyahu was not seen carrying a masks at any level all through the day.
The report indicated this was the results of strain from the Trump administration, which has been notoriously reluctant to endorse social-distancing measures, at the same time as america sees a number of the highest an infection and dying charges on the earth.
It was not clear whether or not Netanyahu had been anticipated to put on a masks throughout the ceremony itself. Not one of the officers earlier than the cameras wore masks on the occasion.
“This sends a really dangerous message to the citizenry, that’s required by the state to keep up distancing guidelines. They need to have all been despatched to 2 weeks quarantine after they got here again, even when just for optics functions,” the senior official advised the paper.
Sharon Elrai, performing director of the Well being Ministry’s public well being companies division, advised Military Radio the delegation had not been given a “VIP waiver” however slightly was allowed guidelines just like these set for skilled athletes based mostly on stringent separation from their atmosphere whereas overseas.
“If these fundamental guidelines had been flouted, then the directions they got will have to be modified,” she mentioned.
Netanyahu on Tuesday participated in a signing ceremony in Washington DC to normalize relations with the UAE and Bahrain, as US President Donald Trump mentioned comparable US-brokered offers had been shut between the Jewish state and several other different nations, together with Saudi Arabia.
Netanyahu and the overseas ministers of Bahrain and the UAE sealed the accords establishing full diplomatic ties with a ceremony on a flag-decorated White Home South Garden.
The flight to Washington was Netanyahu’s first public journey overseas because the begin of the pandemic. The premier was criticized over the timing of the journey, with an infection charges in Israel spiking and the nation headed to a second nationwide lockdown, set to start Friday.
On Wednesday, the Well being Ministry mentioned every day infections had soared previous 5,000 for the primary time.