The Palestinian Authority announced a stricter set of lockdown rules in all of the occupied West Bank on Sunday, July 12, to curb the rising cases of COVID-19. The measures include a complete ban on movement of people between all the 9 governorates of the West Bank for two weeks.
Other measures include a complete shutdown in the governorates of Hebron, Bethlehem, Ramallah, and Nablus for four more days and weekend curfews in all governorates starting on Thursday night until Sunday morning for two weeks, effectively shutting down the four governorates completely for a week.
The notification also imposes dawn-to-dusk curfews from 6 pm till 8 am every day in all the governorates. The spokesperson for the Palestinian government, Ibrahim Melhem, also announced the formation of an “operation room” comprising prime minister Mohammed Shtayyeh, the health minister and the heads of all security services to monitor the implementation of the lockdown norms.
The notice bans all business and social activities during the curfew days, except bakeries and pharmacies.
It asks the Palestinian citizens of Israel to desist from visiting their families and relatives in the West Bank during these days. It also restricts the movement of Palestinians working in Israel. Every day, thousands of Palestinians living in the occupied territories go to work in Israel where the COVID-19 cases have surged in recent times forcing the Israeli government to announce fresh lockdown measures on July 10.
On Sunday, the Palestinian-occupied territories recorded 349 new cases of infection raising the total COVID-19 infections to 7,073 with 39 deaths. Among all the three occupied territories, the West Bank has 6,230 cases, whereas Gaza has 72 and Eastern Jerusalem 807.