HYDERABAD: Many social media users are falsely claiming that Israel is the first COVID-free country in the world.
"Wow Israel, first country to be COVID free," read a tweet.
The claim is not true. As of May 6, 2021, Israel has 1,179 active COVID-19 cases and is not on the list of COVID-free countries.
According to the Israel Ministry of Health, the country still has 1,123 active COVID-19 cases as of May 6. According to the World Health Organization, Israel reported 232 confirmed COVID cases and 5 deaths on May 3, 2021. Since February 2020, it has reported 838,767 cases and 6.370 deaths.
Though the number of infections is drastically decreasing, the country has still active cases. Israel has rolled back the mandatory mask rule and decided to reopen schools, bars, restaurants, and indoor gatherings. However, masks are still required in indoor public spaces.
The vaccination of close to five million people has led to a decrease in the number of active cases from 10,000 new infections per day in mid-January to around 200 cases a day.
Based on a tally by Worldometer, which provides real-time statistics on the pandemic, there are at least 11 countries, territories and special regions with no reported active cases as of May 6.
Tajikistan, Falkland Islands, Macao, Greenland, Saint Pierre and Miquelon, Montserrat, Solomon Islands, Vanuatu, Marshall Islands, Saint Helena and Micronesia have no cases.
Therefore, it will be safe to say that Israel is not the first COVID-free country. The viral claim is false.