Jabbed tourists, children 0-6, to be allowed in Israel from July 1

Written by on June 20, 2021

Starting from July 1, vaccinated foreign nationals will be able to enter Israel, Interior Minister Ayelet Shaked announced on Sunday, confirming the timeline to reopen the country’s skies that had been set by the previous government.

In addition to those who are inoculated, children up to age 6 whose parents meet the requirement will also be allowed in.

No prior authorization will be required, but further details are currently been examined by the Health Ministry, Shaked added. These details include the list of countries from where people are going to be able to enter Israel and which vaccines are going to be accepted.

Unvaccinated individuals entering the country will need to enter quarantine – as is required to Israelis returning from abroad who are not inoculated or recovered.

Last week, a health official said that inoculated individuals from low-risk countries would be able to enter Israel without the need to undergo a serological test to prove the presence of antibodies in their blood. He added that all vaccines developed in the Western world would be accepted.

Shaked also stressed that Israelis are going to be able to continue traveling everywhere they wish, except for the countries at the highest risk in light of their morbidity where an authorization from the special governmental committee is going to be required: at the moment the list includes Argentina, Brazil, India, Mexico, Russia and South Africa.

Foreign nationals from these countries are also not going to be authorized to travel to Israel except in very limited circumstances, such as the parents of a bride or a groom and foreign workers vaccinated in Israel.

The Interior Ministry’s announcement came two days after thousands of travelers who landed in Israel on Friday were sent home without undergoing a PCR test, as the number of incoming passengers at Ben-Gurion Airport is significantly increasing.

Some 19,000 passengers arrived at the airport on Friday – not counting the members of the flight crews, according to a spokesperson of the Airport Authority.

All people entering Israel from abroad are required to undergo a PCR test upon arrival – in addition to present the results of another one before boarding the flight. For this purpose, a testing complex has been operating at the airport since March.

The structure was previously operated by the company Omega in cooperation with the Rambam Medical Center.

On June 15, a new company, Femi, took over – while Omega continues to operate the testing complex at the airport for those who need or wish to get tested before leaving the country.

The number of arrivals on Friday overwhelmed the structure. For this reason and in order to allow people to make it home before the beginning of Shabbat, the Health Ministry exceptionally decided to allow passengers who did not come from countries considered at high risk to leave the airport without being tested.

A spokesperson for Femi said that they are operating about 70 testing stations and that they hoped that similar problems would not occur again in the future.

According to Kan, on Friday some 2,880 people left without undergoing the test.

Since the beginning of June, over 170 people entered the country and tested positive to the virus, out of the 352 total new cases identified in Israel.

“Having spent last year in closures and isolations, we are now entering the summer vacation with great excitement,” Shaked said. “Many families will fly abroad and on their return will have to be responsible and follow the guidelines.”

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