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Israel Entering Full Lockdown for 2 Weeks – with Extension Option

Israel Entering Full Lockdown for 2 Weeks – with Extension Option

The latest COVID-19 information and statistics for the Middle East and North Africa

At 2 pm local time on Friday, Israel will enter a full lockdown for two weeks.

The country is already a week into a countrywide closure, but in the early morning hours of Thursday, the government voted to tighten the restrictions to curb rising coronavirus infections. Cabinet members added the option for an extension.

The new restrictions include the complete closure of workplaces except for essential jobs, the closure of markets except for grocery stores and pharmacies, and the shuttering of synagogues except for prayers on Yom Kippur, which begins on Sunday evening.


Iran’s death toll from the novel coronavirus passed the 25,000 mark on Thursday, rising by 175 to 25,015, according to the Health Ministry. The country has the highest number of cases in the Middle East, with 436,319 total infections, according to Thursday’s update from the Johns Hopkins coronavirus tracker.

President Hassan Rouhani said on Thursday that he was considering the reinstatement of restrictions in some of the worst-hit provinces, according to Iranian media reports.


Four members of the same family recently died from COVID-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus, according to Middle East Monitor. They died in the Damietta Governorate after attending a wedding of one of their relatives.

Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia announced 30 more deaths from the novel coronavirus on Thursday, bringing the total number of fatalities in the kingdom to 4,599. Its Health Ministry also confirmed 498 new cases, bringing the total number of infections to 331,857, with 314,793 recoveries.

United Arab Emirates

Abu Dhabi has fined 1,672 people at beaches and shopping malls for violating coronavirus restrictions over the past two months, Gulf News reports. Violations include the failure to wear facemasks and keep proper social distancing, and the hosting or attendance of social gatherings where participation surpasses the maximum number allowed by the government.

Here are the latest COVID-19 numbers for the Middle East and North Africa as of 17:00 UTC on Thursday.

CountryConfirmed casesDeathsRecoveredActive Cases
Palestinian Territories37,59127426,93410,383
Saudi Arabia331,8574,599314,79312,465
United Arab Emirates88,53240777,93710,188


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