Amid the fears of Coronovirus or COVID-19 outbreak, Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu urged people of his country to greet people with 'Namaste' in Indian style instead of a handshake as a precautionary measure to prevent the spread of the deadly virus.
Addressing a press conference following a meeting with officials to review the preparations to combat the Coronavirus outbreak, Netanyahu said that some simple measures like avoiding handshake to great people can help prevent the spread.
Netanyahu said that handshake can be replaced with some other forms of greetings like the Indian 'Namaste'. The Israeli prime minister even showed people how to do 'Namaste' in Indian style while greeting people. He said that while "we are in the middle of a global epidemic", Israel has done well to contain the virus spread in the country by taking quick actions.
"We have had to take rigorous steps to slow the spread of the disease in Israel, we have taken select isolation and flight policies and measures for flights," Prime Minister Netanyahu added.
Coronavirus cases in Israel
So far, Israel has reported 15 confirmed cases of Coronavirus with nearly 7,000 people in home-quarantine. There has not been any death in Israel due to the COVID-19 infection.
Health Minister Yaacov Litzman, who also accompanied the prime minister, said that they will not hesitate to take unpopular decisions to keep the virus spread in check. "We will not hesitate to do things even if they are unpopular. I don't want to call it an epidemic - but it's not far from it," Litzman said.
Coronavirus death count surges 3,100; 92,000 cases
According to the World Health Organization, there are 92,819 confirmed COVID-19 cases and 3,164 deaths have been reported globally in 67 countries. The death toll in China climbed to 2,943 with 31 more deaths reported today, while 125 confirmed cases were reported, the lowest since the virus outbreak in the country, Chinese health officials said on Tuesday.
The number of confirmed Coronavirus cases in India has risen to 29 and the government is readying an action plan. "So far India has reported 29 positive coronavirus cases, this includes 16 Italians," the minister said.
All international flights and passengers will now have to undergo screening, and not just the 12 countries listed earlier. So far, 589,000 people have been screened at airports, over 1 million screened at borders with Nepal and around 27,000 were currently under community surveillance.