Israel’s ban prohibiting foreigners from entering the country will lapse today, pending possible renewal.
The Israeli government implemented the restrictions in late November. This decision came amidst the spread of the new Omicron variant of COVID-19. Although the restrictions were initially planned to last two weeks, the government extended the ban during a meeting of the Knesset due to a recent spike in positive cases.
Despite the harm that the restrictions will cause for Israel’s tourism industry—which accounts for roughly 6% of the country’s GDP— the Knesset is preparing to extend the travel ban for foreigners until early January to curb daily positive cases. This will increase nationwide demonstrations, staged mostly by workers in the country’s tourism sector. In response, it is highly likely that Tel Aviv will provide a special aid package to the tourism sector with the hope of alleviating the protests. Moving forward, while the Israeli government will continue to curtail travel to Israel, it will also remove countries such as the United States and the United Kingdom from its red list within the next few weeks. With this measure, Tel Aviv will lift mandatory quarantine for vaccinated Israeli citizens who are arriving
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Can is a Publisher and Analyst with Foreign Brief and currently pursuing his PhD in the Department of History at Bighampton University. His research there primarily focuses on the 19th-century Balkan independence movements.