JERUSALEM (VINnews) – The Israeli government voted to ban all foreigners from entering Israel as part of an effort to stem the spread of the new South African “Omicron” variant, one case of which has been confirmed in the country and seven others which are under investigation.
For the time being, all individuals returning from any country – vaccinated Israelis included – will need to be isolated for three days upon entry into Israel. Travelers would be tested at the airport and then be required to take a PCR test on day three, and only leave isolation once a negative result is obtained.
The new rules going into effect on Sunday night will see foreign nationals barred from entering Israel for 14 days, unless they receive special permission from a government panel.
Israel said it detected the new strain in a traveler who had returned from Malawi and was tracing 800 travelers who returned recently from southern African countries. And Australia said early Sunday its scientists were working to determine whether two people who tested positive for COVID after arriving from southern Africa are infected with the omicron variant.