Foreign nationals who have a pregnant daughter living in Israel will now be allowed to enter the country a week before their daughters’ due date, after Interior Minister Ayelet Shaked requested an exemptions for them from Israel’s ban on the entry of foreign nationals.
Israel banned the entry of all foreign nationals last week, with few exemptions, due to fears over the new Omicron corona variant.
Shaked’s office announced the decision on Tuesday morning, saying the Health Ministry had acceded to her request.
The new policy will come into effect this Sunday, although it is still unclear if parents will be able to submit requests for entry permits ahead of that date.
The parents must be vaccinated against COVID and will need to abide by quarantine regulations.
Parents of expectant fathers will not be allowed entry.
It is still unclear whether the parents of women who gave birth in the last few days will be allowed to enter the country under the new exemption policy.
A public campaign spearheaded by the Yad L’Olim organization was launched last week by immigrant women expecting to give birth who have parents living abroad. They called on Shaked to allow their parents to enter the country in order to provide them with the help and support needed by parents of newborn babies.
Twenty women were featured in a social media video calling on Shaked to make this policy change, noting in particular that dozens of foreign national models had recently been given permission to enter the country for the Miss Universe beauty pageant.
“I want to thank Minister Shaked for this important decision,” said former MK Dov Lipman, founder and director of Yad L’Olim. “Now all ministries must work together to make sure the allowance is granted to those who apply for it. I am also working with the authorities to address the issue of those who gave birth recently and are in need of support from their families.”