Photo Credit: Flash90
The empty Departure halls of Ben Gurion Airport on March 8, 2020.

Israel has closed its borders to non-citizens, according to a notice from Population and Immigration Authority.

Citing a recommendation from the Ministry of Health, ministry spokesperson Sabine Haddad said that after two weeks of restricting the entry of passengers who were not citizens of Israel or its residents, stricter measures were needed to prevent the spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus.

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“The Ministry of Health recommends stricter entry prevention measures to prevent the spread of the corona virus. In light of the above, and after receiving the recommendation of the Ministry of Health, it was decided that as of today, no entry of foreigners who are not citizens of Israel or its residents will be allowed,” the Authority said in its statement, even if they can prove the ability to remain quarantined for a 14-day period upon arrival.

Exceptions will be made for those whose lives are based in Israel.

The directive takes effect immediately and applies to all international travelers, “apart from those who received explicit permission from the Population and Immigration Authority” the ministry spokesperson said. All the airlines have been notified.

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Hana Levi Julian is a Middle East news analyst with a degree in Mass Communication and Journalism from Southern Connecticut State University. A past columnist with The Jewish Press and senior editor at Arutz 7, Ms. Julian has written for Babble.com, Chabad.org and other media outlets, in addition to her years working in broadcast journalism.