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June 1, 2020 4:38 pm

Worker in Israeli PM Netanyahu’s Office Diagnosed With COVID-19

avatar by Reuters and Algemeiner Staff

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu delivers a statement before entering the district court room where he is facing a trial for alleged corruption crimes, in Jerusalem, May 24, 2020. Photo: Yonatan Sindel / Pool via Reuters.

An employee in Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s office tested positive for the coronavirus, his office said on Monday, without saying whether the 70-year-old leader had been exposed.

A statement from Netanyahu’s office said an “epidemiological investigation is being conducted, which will provide appropriate guidelines for those who came into contact” with the employee.

Netanyahu has previously self-isolated after two separate COVID-19 scares — first in March after coming into contact with an infected aide, and later in April after his then-health minister was diagnosed with the virus.

The premier tested negative for the virus on both those occasions. Israel‘s Health Ministry generally requires 14-day self-isolation for anyone deemed to have been in proximity with an infected person.

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Israel has reported more than 17,100 COVID-19 cases and 285 deaths. After enacting restrictions early in the outbreak, Israel eased its lockdown in mid-April and gradually allowed schools, businesses, beaches, shops and restaurants to reopen, citing a sustained decrease in new infections.

But infection rates have ticked up over the past week, and Netanyahu has warned that coronavirus curbs would be reimposed if the trend continues.

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