Netanyahu to convene panel on ‘national preparedness’ for deadly coronavirus

On Sunday, Netanyahu will hold a “large-scale” meeting with key officials to address the risks posed by the coronavirus, which originated in China and is racking up a terrifying death toll.

By World Israel News Staff

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will “convene a large-scale discussion – with the participation of ministers, ministry director generals and all relevant staff officials on national preparedness regarding the coronavirus,” said a statement released by his office on Saturday evening.

According to the Prime Minister’s Office, the State of Israel has taken preventive measures and was among the first countries to restrict flights and entry for those arriving from China, where the deadly virus originated.

On Thursday, Israel announced that flights to and from China will be suspended until March 25.

Netanyahu commented on Saturday, “We are not taking any unnecessary chances. The virus is already found on five continents and in over 25 countries. We are aware of the fact that it will be impossible to completely prevent the entry of the virus; therefore, we will be prepared in advance to deal with the virus after its first entry to Israel.”

Among those participating in Sunday’s meeting are the ministers of health, finance, foreign affairs, justice, interior and transportation, in addition to the head of the National Security Council, the director of the Biological Institute, the head of the Public Health Service, and the head of the Health Ministry Medical Division

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Other key officials from the Population Authority, the Civil Aviation Authority, IDF Home Front Command and Israel’s primary first responder service (MDA) will also attend.