Merkel Eyes 10-Week Lockdown in Germany to Beat Virus Spread

Merkel Eyes 10-Week Lockdown in Germany to Beat Virus Spread

German Chancellor Angela Merkel was poised to put the country on a 10-week lockdown if that is what it takes to combat the highly-transmissible British variant of the coronavirus.

Speaking to members of the Conservative party, Merkel said that Germany will have 10 times the number of cases by Easter if the spread goes out of control.

“We need eight to 10 more weeks of tough measures,” she was quoted as saying in a report by German daily Bild.

However, a report by The Independent said that Merkel did not explicitly refer to a tenfold increase in infection numbers in Germany but was solely depending numbers on the 10-times surge in infection numbers in Ireland which now has the world’s largest coronavirus cases.

Europe’s largest economy appears to be able to limit the spread until enough of its population has been immunized to achieve herd immunity.

Last week, Germany tightened its national lockdown and extended it until the end of January over fears of a more transmissible virus strain that was feared to further put pressure on struggling medical institutions.

The rules have seen the closure of the hospitality industry as well as schools, non-essential shops, and cultural and leisure facilities.

However, the Chancellor has repeatedly stressed that even at the end of January there is no guarantee that measures will be relaxed.

The aim is to bring the incidence (new infections per 100,000 inhabitants in seven days) below the level of 50. Only then would the health authorities be in a position to track the contacts of infected people again.

This after the Robert Koch Institute for infectious diseases saw 12,802 cases on Tuesday, with death at 891, bringing the total to 41,577.

Germany has been in a state of shutdown since November 2nd when the ‘lockdown light’ came into force. However, restrictions have got progressively tougher.

Photo by Kristof Roomp/Flickr

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