Israel will prohibit travelers who recovered from COVID-19 at least six months ago but haven’t been vaccinated if they lack a digital recovery certificate, which is not available to U.S. citizens, The Jerusalem Post reports.
Digital recovery certificates, which cover COVID-19 vaccination, test and recovery, facilitate safe travel for citizens and have been key to supporting Europe’s hard-hit tourism industry. About 40 countries are taking part in the European Union’s digital passport program. Individuals who recovered from COVID-19 more than six months ago will have to receive at least one dose of a verified vaccine before they can travel to Israel.
Paper vaccination certificates, such as those given out by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, will still be accepted. An American tourist who has recovered from COVID-19 would have to have been fully vaccinated within the last six months, or else they would need to get a booster shot.
The Jerusalem Post notes that the change is being made due to concerns about the ability of travelers to forge PCR test results, which thousands of travelers have attempted to use to circumvent COVID-19 restrictions. Recently, hundreds of travelers returning from the country of Oman following Rosh Hashanah tested positive for the virus after landing in Israel despite providing negative test results before boarding their flights back to the country.
Dov Lipman, the founder of the organization YAD L’OLIM, which helps the relatives of new Israeli immigrants travel to the country, told the Jerusalem Post that he has received hundreds of messages from worried travelers since the travel plans were announced last week.
"We will continue to work hard to change this unreasonable decision," Lipman told the Post, going on to characterize the restrictions as "unfair and unacceptable."
"This is not opening the country to tourism," he continued to the newspaper. "It’s closing the door to tens of thousands of families of olim and Jews, in general, who desperately want to come to Israel."
© 2022 Newsmax. All rights reserved.