Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu flew to the US just moments after announcing a second nationwide lockdown to tackle the coronavirus, a move described by opposition leader Yair Lapid as a total failure.
"The only reason our government has decided to go into the second lockdown is because they're completely lost," he told AFP.
"It's a very aggressive move. It's devastating for the economy and it's not that helpful in terms of stopping the epidemic," Lapid noted.
According to an AFP tally over the past fortnight, Israel is second behind Bahrain for the world's highest coronavirus infection rate.
On Sunday, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu announced a nationwide lockdown starting on Friday, the eve of the Jewish New Year holiday.
Meanwhile, nearly 5,000 new COVID cases were confirmed in 24 hours in Israel after 4,973 cases were confirmed positive.
So far, up to 126,000 cases were recorded in Israel, in addition to 1,140 deaths. Meanwhile, 120,000 recovered from the infection.
Tens of thousands of Israelis have demonstrated in recent weeks, calling for Netanyahu to resign over his handling of the pandemic and its economic fallout.