Israel begins re-opening as almost 50% of population vaccinated

Israel have re-opened parts of their economy today as almost 50% of their population are vaccinated.

While shops in Israel are now open to all, access to leisure sites like gyms and theatres is limited to vaccinees or those who have recovered from the disease with presumed immunity.

A so-called "Green Pass" status displayed on a special Health Ministry app is being used to monitor those who have received their vaccines.

Social distancing measures are still in force.

Dancing is barred at banquet halls, and synagogues, mosques orchurches are required to halve their normal number of worshippers.

It's exactly a year after Israel's first documented coronavirus case, and the Government aim to open the economy more widely next month.

RT reports that Israel has administered at least one dose of the Pfizer vaccine to more than 45% of its 9 million population, the Health Ministry says.

Israel's vaccine roll-out has been watched the world over, as it is the first place to widely administer the vaccine outside clinical trials.

The two-shot regimen has reduced Covid-19 infections by 95.8%, ministry data showed.

The country has logged more than 740,000 cases and 5,500 deaths from the illness, prompting criticism of the Netanyahu government's sometimes patchy enforcement of threenational lockdowns. It has pledged that there will not be a fourth.

Elementary schoolers and pupils in the last two years of high school attended classes in Israeli towns found to have contagion rates under control.

Middle schoolers are due back by next month, after almost a year of remote learning.