Israelis who want to visit bars, restaurants, swimming pools, and all indoor or outdoor events of more than 100 people must show their ‘Green Pass’, a document proving they’ve been vaccinated against Covid-19 or have recently recovered from the disease.
However, the ‘Green Pass’ is less of a public health measure and more of a method of forcing the populace to get the shot, according to footage of cabinet ministers overheard before a meeting on Sunday, broadcast by Israel’s Channel 12 News that night and reported by the Times of Israel.
Speaking in Hebrew, Interior Minister Ayelet Shaked told Health Minister Nitzan Horowitz that “you can remove the Green Pass for outdoor restaurants.”
“In pools, too, not just in restaurants. Epidemiologically it’s correct,” Horowitz responded. “The thing is, I’m telling you this, our problem is people who don’t get vaccinated. We need that they… otherwise… we will not get out of this,” he added.
Horowitz then added that while the pass doesn’t have “medical justification” in some scenarios, he doesn’t want to start making exceptions, “because then they will say ‘if not pools, then why water parks?’”
Israel is one of the most widely vaccinated countries in the world, with 61 percent of the entire population fully inoculated, according to data from Johns Hopkins University. In addition, the country is currently administering booster shots, which are currently available for everyone over the age of 30.
Nevertheless, daily cases pushed to record highs above 10,000 at the beginning of this month, and deaths have climbed to their highest point since spring.
Read More: Israeli health minister says vaccine passport system doesn’t have ‘medical justification’ in some cases – leaked footage