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Palestinian workers stay in Israel for three weeks in a row

Some 46,000 Palestinians are now lodged on construction sites in Israel; they must stay where they work for three weeks before going back home.
Palestinian labourers queue to enter Israel through the Mitar checkpoint in the occupied West Bank city of Hebron on June 28, 2020, (Photo by HAZEM BADER / AFP) (Photo by HAZEM BADER/AFP via Getty Images)

For the last two weeks, the coronavirus has continued to spread in Israel. The spike was such that on July 7, Israel’s government reimposed a series of transportation and crowding restrictions. The ultra-Orthodox city of Beitar Illit was declared a restricted zone. The Palestinian Authority has also been experiencing a sharp rise in the number of people infected. On July 4, Palestinian Health Minister Mai al-Kaila warned that the situation in the West Bank city of Hebron was out of control and that the five-day lockdown in place was likely to be extended.

On June 28, as COVID-19 kept gaining terrain on both sides, Israeli authorities published new instructions for the entry of Palestinian workers. The Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development notified all companies employing Palestinians that workers holding a permit would be authorized to enter and work in Israel for a period of three weeks only, starting that day. The employers are required to provide the laborers with health insurance and with adequate lodging. The laborers are instructed to remain within the boundaries of the workplace and the sleep place, without traveling anywhere else during the three-week period.

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