Bennett's India trip brought into question after catching COVID-19

Gantz cancels his trip to Delhi, which had been a point of contention with the premier.

 PRIME MINISTER Naftali Bennett with his Indian counterpart Narendra Modi at the COP26 conference in Glasgow earlier this month. (photo credit: GPO)
PRIME MINISTER Naftali Bennett with his Indian counterpart Narendra Modi at the COP26 conference in Glasgow earlier this month.
(photo credit: GPO)

Prime Minister Naftali Bennett tested positive for COVID-19 on Monday.

Bennett had planned to travel to India on Saturday night, but coronavirus could get in the way of those plans. The Prime Minister’s Office did not have an update on the status of the trip at press time.

The premier will have to spend a minimum of five days in isolation, according to the current COVID rules, which could allow him to fly on Saturday. However, if he continues to have symptoms, he may have to quarantine for a longer period.

The Prime Minister’s Office said that Bennett felt well on Monday morning and that he continued working from home. The prime minister said he felt light flu symptoms, according to a source who spoke to him later in the day.

Bennett’s visit to India was meant to be his first as premier, marking 30 years of relations between Jerusalem and Delhi. Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi invited Bennett when they met at the UN Climate Change Conference in Glasgow last year.

 Prime Minister Naftali Bennett at a joint press conference with US Secretary of State Yair Lapid, March 27, 2022.  (credit: OLIVIER FITOUSSI/FLASH90) Prime Minister Naftali Bennett at a joint press conference with US Secretary of State Yair Lapid, March 27, 2022. (credit: OLIVIER FITOUSSI/FLASH90)

Defense Minister Benny Gantz planned to fly to India days before Bennett, but canceled the trip on Monday because of the recent series of terrorist attacks, his office said.

Gantz’s visit to India, preempting Bennett’s, was widely interpreted as part of ongoing disagreements between them, which also included the prime minister blocking him from taking part in a summit with Jordanian King Abdullah and Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas.

The two senior ministers met on Sunday and discussed their differences.