Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on Thursday that Israel had reopened parts of its economy too early, as virus cases in the country have continued to rise sharply.
“I take responsibility for this measure and I take responsibility for fixing it,” Netanyahu said at a news conference at his office in Jerusalem, referring to the reopening of bars, nightclubs, event halls and other venues.
After forcing them to close in March, Israel reopened bars and nightclubs in late May and event halls in mid-June. But earlier this week, the government ordered them closed again.
Since late June, virus cases in Israel have soared. The nation is averaging more than 1,000 new cases per day, up from 338 two weeks ago, according to a New York Times database.
Mr. Netanyahu also presented an aid package for the nation’s ravaged economy that would expand eligibility for unemployment benefits, provide grants to self-employed people and offer relief to businesses.