After days of battling COVID-19 infection at his home in West Bank, a top Palestinian official was admitted to a hospital in Jerusalem, the BBC reported. Saeb Erekat, the Chief negotiator for the state of Palestine, tested positive earlier this month. On October 18, he was shifted, first to a hospital in Tel Aviv and then to Hadassah Hospital in Jerusalem, following requests from Palestinian officials.
As per the Palestinian Liberation Organisation (PLO), Erekat underwent a lung transplant in 2017 and requires immediate care. Erekat has been a key negotiator in peace talks with Israel for many years and is known for the Oslo Accords, a series of agreements signed by Israel and Palestinians in the 1990s.
"Following his contraction of Covid-19, and due to the chronic health problems he faces in the respiratory system, Dr Erekat's condition now requires medical attention in a hospital. He is currently being transferred to a hospital in Tel Aviv,” PLO said in a statement.
Following his contraction of COVID-19, and due to the chronic health problems he faces in the respiratory system, Dr. Erekat's condition now requires medical attention in a hospital. He is currently being transferred to a hospital in Tel Aviv.— Palestine PLO-NAD (@nadplo) October 18, 2020
Meanwhile, Israel is partially lifting the month-long nationwide lockdown that had been implemented in an attempt to curb the spread of COVID-19. Israel's special cabinet for handling the COVID-19 revealed that some of the restrictions were lifted on Sunday, October 18. The decision was taken amid declining new coronavirus cases in the country.
As per the Israeli cabinet’s decision, the restrictions that previously limited people to a 1,000-meter radius will be lifted, in addition to that restaurants will be allowed to reopen but only offer takeaway options and businesses that do not cater to clients will also be allowed to reopen. Schools and other retail businesses will still remain closed for the foreseeable future.