The coronavirus director, Prof. Nahman Ash, is not looking for a dramatic downturn in infection figures before starting to ease up on the lockdown, he said in a radio interview on Thursday. As the ministers wrangled over the extension of the countrywide closures into next week, infection figures scarcely moved. Another 7,665 new cases and 9,2pc positive tests were registered on Wednesday. There was a slight decrease in serious cases to 1,132 with 306 on ventilators, but the death toll rise to 4,609 in all. The massive vaccination program continues apace, with people aged 35 plus added to the roster of eligible recipients, More than 2,85 million Israelis have received their first shots and 1,4 million both doses.