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Seventy per cent of Israel’s over-16s have had first vaccine jab

Over 70 per cent of people over the age of 16 in Israel have had their first dose of a Covid-19 vaccine, Health Minister Yuli Edelstein said Tuesday.

Over 70 per cent of people over the age of 16 in Israel have had their first dose of a Covid-19 vaccine, Health Minister Yuli Edelstein said Tuesday.

Edelstein wrote on Twitter that 4,456,000 people have had their first jab, of whom 3,076,000 have also had their second.

With the Jewish holiday of Purim coming up this week, however, the minister warned of “mass infection celebrations planned for us.”

Purim is a festive holiday which usually involves large fancy dress parties across the country for both children and adults.

Last year, a mass outbreak of coronavirus infections followed the holiday and officials are concerned about a repeat of this.

“We will work to implement a night-time curfew and to significantly reduce public transport during the days of Purim,” Edelstein said.

On Monday, 4,677 new cases of coronavirus were recorded.

Israel is currently in the process of opening up areas of education, entertainment, business and commerce.

On Sunday the country introduced incentives for people who have been vaccinated against Covid-19, as data released by the Health Ministry indicated the Pfizer/BioNTech jab is highly effective.

Israelis who have had the required two doses are now allowed to visit sport centres, theatres, museums and hotels.

They have to present a vaccination certificate, or so-called “green pass,” at the entrance.

The Tel Aviv municipality said Tuesday that it will celebrate the return of the cultural sector, which has been mostly closed for almost a year, by hosting an outdoors concert on Wednesday for the city’s vaccinated senior residents.

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