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German Leaders Call for Christmas Lockdown as Cases Break Records

GERMANY could possibly enter a national lockdown before Christmas as the country’s Covid cases rise to record-breaking levels.

On Wednesday 23,000 cases were recorded alongside 598 deaths across Germany, the worst day for coronavirus since the beginning of the pandemic. Several political leaders have urged the government to impose a national lockdown despite the Christmas season, with some warning that a failure to do so could cost tens of thousands of lives.

The leader of Bavaria, where cases are soaring, tweeted to ask “why hesitate when we know it’s necessary?’. Markus Soder called on Berlin to “wind everything down before Christmas”, asking for shops to close, school holidays to extend, and curfews to be imposed.

Germany has been under a ‘soft lockdown’ since November 2nd, with large gatherings banned alongside closed bars and restaurants. However, some have called to take measures further and shut down shops and schools.

From the 23rd of December to the 1st of January the country was expecting to ease lockdown measures briefly for Christmas, with travel restrictions lifted and gatherings of ten people from two households permitted. Many now believe that Germany will cancel this plan over the weekend in the face of soaring cases.

Health Minister Jens Spahn said it was “clear that we need additional measures and rather sooner than later. We cannot allow this to be a festival for the virus. The virus doesn’t care whether or not we’ve bought Christmas presents”. He added that “the ‘us’ has to be more important than the ‘I’, and that means making a sacrifice”.

In an unusually emotive address to the nation, long-serving Chancellor Angela Merkel urged Germans to avoid travel this Christmas or risk never seeing their grandparents again.

Since the start of the pandemic Germany has recorded 1,226,109 cases and 20,348 deaths from Covid-19.


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Written by

Oisin Sweeney

Oisin is an Irish writer based in Seville, the sunny capital of Andalucia. After starting his working life as a bookseller, he moved into journalism and cut his teeth as a reporter at one of Ireland's biggest news websites. Since joining Euro Weekly News in November, he has enjoyed covering the latest stories from Seville, Spain and further afield - with special interests in crime, cybersecurity, and European politics. Anyone who can pronounce his name first try gets a free cerveza...

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