Israeli military sets up coronavirus task force

The military said one of its main goals is to significantly shorten the waiting time for samples and epidemiological investigations. (File/AFP)
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Updated 05 August 2020

Israeli military sets up coronavirus task force

  • In a statement, the military said the new task force would begin operating next week
  • The unit will operate a sampling center, a quarantine center, recovery hotels, an evaluation complex and an epidemiological investigations center

JERUSALEM: The Israeli military said Wednesday it was establishing a coronavirus task force aimed at cutting the chain of infection in the country.
In a statement, the military said the new task force would begin operating next week and connect all the different bodies under one umbrella. The unit, headed by a brigadier general, will operate a sampling center, a quarantine center, recovery hotels, an evaluation complex and an epidemiological investigations center.
The move looks to give the country’s largest organization overall responsibility for contact tracing at a time when the government has come under fire for its handling of the pandemic. The ministry of defense has long advocated utilizing the military’s vast infrastructure and resources to combat the spread of the virus but has been rebuffed till now because of inter-government squabbling.
Israel received praise for its early handling of the coronavirus crisis and imposing tight movement restrictions. But since reopening the economy in May new cases have spiked to record highs, with upwards of 2,000 infections a day. As part of his set of recommendations to stem the tide, the country’s new coronavirus czar said more responsibility should be handed over to the military.
The military said one of its main goals is to significantly shorten the waiting time for samples and epidemiological investigations.


US president awards Kuwait’s emir with rare military decoration

Updated 2 min 45 sec ago

US president awards Kuwait’s emir with rare military decoration

  • The award was accepted on behalf of the emir by his son Sheikh Nasser Sabah Al-Ahmed Al-Sabah
  • The honor was granted in recognition of Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah’s “great efforts” and the important role he plays in the region and the world

LONDON: US President Donald Trump on Friday presented Kuwait’s emir with a rare military award during a private ceremony at the White House.
The Legion of Merit, Degree Chief Commander is a prestigious decoration that can only be bestowed by the American president and was last awarded in 1991.
The honor was granted in recognition of Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah’s “great efforts” and the important role he plays in the region and the world, the Kuwait News Agency (KUNA) reported.
It also reflected the “distinguished and historic” partnership between Kuwait and the US and came in advance of the 60th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between the two countries, KUNA added.
The award was accepted on behalf of the emir by his son Sheikh Nasser Sabah Al-Ahmed Al-Sabah.

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