Israel Tightens COVID ‘Green Pass’ Rules, Sparking Protest

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A woman wears a yellow Star of David, like the ones Jews were obligated to wear during World War II, with Hebrew reads "not vaccinated" during a protest against the Health Ministry's "green pass" system, in Tel Aviv, Israel, Oct. 2, 2021. Israel restricted its coronavirus "green pass" on Sunday to those who have received a COVID-19 booster or recently recovered, sparking protests by opponents who say the system is a form of forced vaccination. (AP Photo/Oded Balilty)

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Israel restricted its COVID Green Pass on Sunday to allow only those who have received a vaccine booster dose or recently recuperated from coronavirus to enter indoor venues. The new criteria mean that nearly 2 million people will lose their vaccination passport in the coming days.

Israel is the first country to make a booster shot a requirement for its digital vaccination passport. The move is widely seen as a step to encourage booster vaccination among those who have yet to receive a third dose.

Under the new guidelines, people must have received a booster shot to be eligible for a green pass. Those who have received two vaccine doses, and those who have recovered from coronavirus, will be issued passes valid for six months after the date of their vaccination or recovery.

The government’s advisory cabinet on coronavirus was set to convene Sunday to discuss existing restrictions and guidelines.

Technical problems hamstrung the Health Ministry’s rollout of the updated green pass as millions of Israelis tried to reissue digital documentation that would allow entry to shops, restaurants, cultural events, gyms and other indoor venues.

Scores of Israelis staged demonstrations around the country in protest of the green pass system, with convoys of cars clogging morning commutes as many Israelis returned to work Sunday after September’s Jewish High Holidays. Opponents of the system said it is a form of forced vaccination.

“We are totally against any forced vaccinations, or any forced medications, and we are totally against doing anything to our children and grandchildren that we don’t agree with,” said Sarah Felt, who protested along the main highway connecting Jerusalem and Tel Aviv.

Israel raced out of the gate early this year to vaccinate most of its adult population after striking a deal with Pfizer to trade medical data in exchange for a steady supply of doses.

This summer Israel launched an aggressive booster campaign to shore up waning vaccine efficacy in its population. Over 60% of Israel’s population has received two doses of the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine and nearly 3.5 million of Israel’s 9.3 million citizens have received a booster dose of the vaccine. But at least 2 million more have received just two doses, and many will lose the privileges bestowed by the green pass.

Recent months have seen a surge in new cases of coronavirus in Israel. As of Sunday, over 70% of the 588 serious coronavirus cases in Israeli hospitals were unvaccinated individuals, according to Health Ministry data.

The ministry issued a statement Sunday morning that because of heavy traffic on its green pass website and app, previously existing certificates would be valid in the coming few days.

(AP)


5 COMMENTS

  1. If any wicked anti vaxxer Israeli doesn’t like the new rules, let them become Australian &/or New Zealanders, and see 1st hand how they like the Corona rules of their new country.

  2. I guess many people I know won’t be going to Eretz Yisrael anytime soon.

    And to 147, just because someone is Anti-Vaxx doesn’t mean they approve of what NZ is doing.

  3. 147, what are you saying? Australia has the strictest Covid rules in the world, and their infection rates are thru the roof. More restrictions, endless “booster” shots, and wearing the blue mask (not N95) have very little to do with the slowing down of the virus. It’s got to fizzle out on its own. More boosters means more variants. Follow the science

  4. @147- The rules are utterly draconian, and even the FDA/CDC thinks it’s much. You can’t go into a restaurant, concert, public gym or pool unless you’re triple vaxxed?? That’s insane. You don’t need to be an antivaxxer (I’m not, I’m double vaxxed) to know this imposes undue difficulty on people and their liberties.

  5. Aside from the ‘covid shot’ releasing the virus and other toxins into its recipients (that is responsible for heart inflammation and so much more), wireless telecomm and internet is considered a primary culprit as causation of ‘covid’ — it being understood that the ‘covid’ cause is actually radiation poisoning by many involved in its study and research. This is what is weakening the immune systems of many. Unfortunately, telecomm doesn’t want to part with its lollipop – neither though, did Rome want to part with their ‘modern’ lead produced water systems. Wireless needs more regulation, and GM (genetically modified) foods and pesticides need to be regulated as well – out of the food supply – these are also immune system weakeners.