In Israel, coronavirus-cases have surged by 50 percent in the past week, a rise being blamed on the Delta variant. Israel was among the world’s first countries to reopen after lockdown. To date, almost two thirds of Israelis have had their first shot. Now authorities are calling on young people to come forward to get vaccinated to avoid the return of COVID restrictions.
The delta variant has driven infections to levels not seen in Israel since April – mainly among unvaccinated people. Some vaccinated people also have been infected. For now, the number needing hospital treatment remains low, although figures are rising.
The new Israeli government is pushing for the age group 12-15 to be inoculated now with the BioNTech-Pfizer vaccine. Prime minister Naftali Bennett is appealing to young people directly:
Israel has re-imposed an indoor mask mandate and tightened controls at the main international airport.
Further restrictions might be imposed if the Delta variant continues to spread. But for now, Israel aims to get most youngsters over 12 fully vaccinated before some of its doses expire later this month.
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