Israel to relax some travel restrictions

Israel will relax some restrictions on international travel for its citizens today. Nine countries, which Israelis were previously banned from

Israel COVID

Photo: Sebastian Scheiner/AP

Israel will relax some restrictions on international travel for its citizens today.

Nine countries, which Israelis were previously banned from entering—including Russia, the UK, India and others—have been removed from the restricted list. Under a newly established color system, countries are assigned to either the ‘red list’, ‘orange list’ or ‘yellow list.’

Travel to red list countries—including Brazil, Spain and Turkey—requires official approval from the Israeli government, violators face a $1500 fine. Travel to orange list countries is permitted but all citizens, including those who have been vaccinated, must quarantine for one week upon return to Israel. Travelers to yellow list countries need only quarantine until receiving a negative test upon their return.

Despite roughly 63% of Israelis being fully vaccinated, the country is facing its highest rate of daily infections since February with roughly 5,400 new cases being recorded daily. While Prime Minister Naftali Bennett has vowed to avoid a new lockdown at all costs, his focus lies on avoiding domestic shutdowns. As such, despite today’s easing of restrictions, a reimposition of some international travel restrictions is likely to prevent further infections though may also slow economic recovery as some trade and business-related travel is blocked.

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