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First Plane Bringing Vital Medical Supplies to Israel from China Touches Down

El Al flights will land at a rate of two per day until all 20 tons of medical equipment, including 900,000 surgical masks, 500,00 protective suits and several ventilators, have been delivered.
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April 6, 2020
El Al Israel Airlines departure counter is pictured empty after it cancelled flights to Italy at Ben Gurion International Airport, near Tel Aviv, on February 27, 2020. – Israel has recorded three confirmed cases of the COVID-19 virus, including two from the Diamond Princess cruise ship and an Israeli who had been in northern Italy. (Photo by JACK GUEZ / AFP) (Photo by JACK GUEZ/AFP via Getty Images)

The first in a convoy of 11 El Al planes carrying tons of critical medical equipment to Israel from China touched down at Ben-Gurion International Airport on Monday morning, as the nation continues to battle the coronavirus pandemic.

Israel’s Defense Ministry announced on Sunday that planes carrying 20 tons of vital medical supplies, including 900,000 surgical masks, 500,000 protective suits, several ventilators and other equipment would touch down one after another over the course of the next several days, in a coordinated effort with Israel’s Foreign Ministry, El Al Airlines and Israel Chemicals.

Due to an international run on coronavirus testing reagents, Israel has not been able to perform the 30,000 tests per day that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called for last week, but has still managed to continue testing on a smaller scale.

As of Monday, Israel’s coronavirus death toll stood at 51, with 8,611 confirmed cases of infection. So far, 585 people have recovered from the virus since the first official case was registered on Feb. 2.

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