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‘Namastey over handshake’: Israel PM Netanyahu advice amid coronavirus fears

Israel has 15 confirmed cases of the deadly virus but no deaths, with some 7,000 others in home-quarantine.

By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi | Updated: March 5, 2020 2:25:05 pm
coronavirus, coronavirus death cases, israel prime minister benjamin netanyahu, coronavirus latest news, coronavirus news update, coronavirus latest news update, namaste over handshake coronavirus Netanyahu also demonstrated at the press conference how Indians do ‘Namaste’. (Twitter/indemtel)

Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu Wednesday encouraged his citizens to greet each other with a ‘Namastey’ — the common Indian manner of greeting with folded hands — and avoid handshakes, as one of the measures to prevent the spread of the deadly coronavirus.

At a press conference following a review meeting to fight the infection, Netanyahu said several measures will be announced to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, but some simple steps like replacing handshakes with other forms of greetings, like the Indian ‘Namaste’, can help. He also demonstrated at the press conference how Indians do ‘Namaste’.

“We have had to take rigorous steps to slow the spread of the disease in Israel, we have taken select isolation and flight policies and measures for flights,” he added.

Israel has 15 confirmed cases of the deadly virus but no deaths, with some 7,000 others in home-quarantine.

Click here to read the latest news on the coronavirus outbreak

“We will not hesitate to do things even if they are unpopular. I don’t want to call it an epidemic — but it’s not far from it,” he said.

Over 3,000 people have died of coronavirus worldwide, while some 90,000 have been infected. China, where the coronavirus broke out, confirmed 38 new deaths on Wednesday, taking the toll to 2,981 with a total of 80,270 infected. Outside Hubei, the epicentre, there were only four deaths.

In South Korea, the death toll has risen to 32, with 5,328 people infected. In Italy, the toll jumped to 79, with over 2,500 confirmed cases. In Iran, at least 77 people have died while 2,336 are infected.

Meanwhile in India, the total number of confirmed cases reached 28. Among them, one person was from Delhi, six of his relatives in Agra, 16 Italians and their Indian driver, one in Telangana and the three earlier cases in Kerala.

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