Gaza placed under lockdown after four people in refugee camp test positive

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    People line up outside a bakery before lockdown orders go into effect in Gaza City on Aug. 24. (Mahmud Hams/AFP/Getty Images)

    The Gaza Strip is under a full lockdown after four people at a refugee camp tested positive for the coronavirus, according to Reuters.

    With its crowded refugee camps, high poverty levels and minimal health-care infrastructure, the Palestinian territory is considered highly vulnerable to a potential outbreak. Until Monday, no infections had been reported outside quarantine centers, Reuters reported.

    Hamas, the militant group that controls the territory, requires anyone entering or returning to Gaza to enter self-isolation for 21 days.

    One woman who was granted permission to travel from Gaza to Jerusalem for medical reasons tested positive for the coronavirus upon her arrival there, leading Gaza authorities to uncover a cluster at the al-Maghazi refugee camp, according to the Associated Press.

    Although all four people who tested positive were members of the same family, authorities quickly imposed a curfew and announced a 48-hour shutdown for businesses as residents scrambled to stock up on food and other household necessities.

    The lockdown comes amid escalating tensions between Israel and groups linked to Hamas, with both sides trading fire across the Gaza frontier.

    The Washington Post

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