Tens of thousands of Israelis will be required to remain quarantined as cultural, sporting and other public events including celebrations of the upcoming Purim holiday will all be canceled.

The Health Ministry on Wednesday issued new guidelines to combat the spread of the coronavirus, including a requirement for anyone returning from France, Germany, Switzerland, Austria, and Spain to maintain a two-week quarantine. Travelers returning from China, Singapore, Thailand, Japan, Hong Kong, Macau, South Korea, and Italy have already been instructed to do the same.

Dr Arnon Afek is the Associate Director  of the Sheba medical center and the former Director General of the Health Ministry.

We asked him if the stringent measures introduced on Wednesday were really necessary.