Abbas Declares State of Emergency for One Month over Coronavirus

PA President Abbas issued a presidential decree declaring state of emergency in Palestine for one month, after seven cases of coronavirus were confirmed in Bethlehem. (Photo: via Twitter)

Palestinian Authority  President Mahmoud Abbas issued a presidential decree on Thursday, declaring a state of emergency in Palestine for one month, after seven cases of coronavirus were confirmed in the West Bank city of Bethlehem.

Soon after, Palestinian Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh, in his efforts to fight the coronavirus, decided to shut down the country for one month, starting at 8:00 am local time on Friday morning.

Speaking on the official Palestine TV, Shtayyeh said that based on the powers granted to him in the decree by President Abbas, he decided to shut down all educational facilities, all tourist and religious areas, national parks, and cancel all hotel reservations for foreign tourists.

At the same time, all national or international conferences planned in Palestine will be canceled.

He also stressed that movement between the Palestinian cities should only be done “in cases of extreme necessity,” especially in the governorate of Bethlehem where the first seven cases of coronavirus have originated.

Shtayyeh also said he was studying closing all crossings between Palestine and the rest of the world “as needed.”

All kinds of gathering, celebrations, demonstrations, and strikes have been prohibited throughout Palestine and each governor in his governorate was charged with implementing these procedures as security forces will be deployed to implement these decisions.

Media statements from any official except those authorized by the Prime Minister were also prohibited.

(Palestine Chronicle, WAFA, Social Media)

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