Joint List Leader Tests Positive for Coronavirus

MK Ayman Odeh, the Joint List party leader, announced on Sunday that he has tested positive for coronavirus. 

In a statement he released, the 45 year old reassured people that he only has a slight fever. Odeh informed that he feels fine and will quarantine himself. However, he will still be fulfilling his parliamentary duties as he recovers from the virus. 

The head of the predominantly Arab party also added that people should be wary of the virus. He reiterated that it should not be taken lightly and that social distancing should be maintained. Odeh urged people to especially focus on personal hygiene to curb the spread of Covid-19. 

In addition, the leader stated that everyone should act responsibly and follow guidelines. Masks should also be worn at all times. His statement also included Odeh saying that the virus is ‘dangerous’, ‘real’, and ‘contagious’. 

Up until now, it is not clear whether there are other politicians who have tested positive for the virus. For now, it is not known whether any of them have come in contact with the 45 year old and would need to quarantine themselves as well. 

On Saturday, Gila Gamliel, the Environmental Protection Minister, reported that she had contracted the Covid-19 virus. She is the fourth member of the current Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu’s cabinet to test positive for the disease. 

Back in August, Pnina Tamano-Shata, the Immigration and Absorption Minister of Blue and White, also fell ill due to the virus. The news broke only weeks after Rafi Peretz, the Jerusalem Affairs Minister announced that he too had been infected by the disease. 

In April, the health minister at the time, Yaakov Litzman belonging to United Torah Judaism, had been diagnosed with the Covid-19 virus. 

The latest cases emerged when Israel implemented a lockdown on the entire country as cases started to increase. The surge in the number of people testing positive for the virus has affected the entire country. However, the most hit by the pandemic in Israel right now are Arab-majority communities. 

The country’s second lockdown was imposed on the 18th of September. But, it has been less strict than the one implemented by authorities earlier in the year. Despite the fact that deaths and cases continue to rise dramatically each day, the lockdown conditions remain lax. 

The public has also been reported for not taking the health guidelines and social distancing rules seriously lately. Thus, government authorities and influencers repeatedly urge them to treat the disease with caution. The Health Ministry has also warned that if the irresponsible behavior remains consistent, another wave of the coronavirus may hit the country. 

Ever since the pandemic struck the country of Israel, there have been 265,085 confirmed cases. Out of these 70,366 cases remain active. 891 of the people currently infected are in serious condition whereas, 326 are only moderately ill. The Health Ministry of Israel has also reported that 1,692 people have lost their lives as a result of the spread of coronavirus in the country.