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15 Americans quarantined in Bethlehem as Israel & Palestine struggle to stop coronavirus spread

15 Americans quarantined in Bethlehem as Israel & Palestine struggle to stop coronavirus spread

Fifteen US tourists have been placed under quarantine in a hotel in the West Bank city of Bethlehem, a Palestinian authority spokesman has confirmed. The hotel was quarantined after seven tourists living there were suspected of having contracted the deadly novel coronavirus. officially known as COVID-19, the Israeli media reported without specifying the nationalities of those under suspicion.

"There is a 15-member American delegation in the hotel. They are still there and they are being dealt with according to quarantine regulations like all the others who are there,” the spokesman, Ibrahim Melhem, told Reuters.

The Israeli authorities also put the entire city on lock-down, banning both Israelis and Palestinians from entering or leaving it. The Palestinian Authority meanwhile declared a state of emergency in the West Bank, closing schools, placing movement restrictions for the local population and barring tourists from coming to the area.