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Netanyahu said interested in reauthorizing Shin Bet tracking of virus carriers

Prime Minister Netanyahu is interested in renewing a controversial program allowing the Shin Bet security agency to use sensitive personal data to track coronavirus carriers and those who were exposed to them, the Haaretz daily reports.

The report comes after Deputy Health Minister Yoav Kisch, a member of Netanyahu’s Likud party, called earlier today for the swift passage of a law authorizing the tracking program, which lapsed earlier this month after the government declined to advance legislation anchoring it in law.

Deputy Health Minister Yoav Kisch says the government was already aware of many of the details about the rise in coronavirus cases contained in a dire report released earlier today, and is taking steps to deal with them.

In an interview with Channel 13 news, Kisch says the health system is now better equipped to deal with the pandemic than it was in March, when Israel saw its first major outbreak of COVID-19.

He also says he and Health Minister Yuli Edelstein want a thriving economy and don’t want to reimpose sweeping lockdown measures.

Source: AP via TOI

Note:

The Intelligence Department’s Information and Knowledge Center on Saturday published a report discussing the spread of COVID-19 in Israel, warning that if Israel does not manage to control the spread, the country would have approximately 1,000 new cases each day, and hundreds of deaths.

According to the report, “the State of Israel is right now entering a second wave of coronavirus infections, which is different in its characteristics than the first wave, but which is no less serious.”

“During the past few weeks, the number of new cases has consistently increased. In the week between May 15-21, the average number of new cases discovered each day was 16, and today we have a daily average of approximately 200 new cases.”

“If some action is not taken and the current rise does not drop significantly (and remain in the range of 4-8% per day) – in another month the number of new cases each day will be above 1,000 and the total number of deaths will reach many hundreds.”

The report also listed a number of steps which would ensure that the dire predictions do not become reality. These include rethinking the recent steps to reopen the economy, both in terms of their consequences for infection rates and in terms of the message they send the public; and significantly expanding both local and national coronavirus information campaigns, including focusing on specific efforts for the various sectors.

Source: Arutz Sheva