Tuesday, Oct 27

Merkel urges citizens to reduce contacts

German leaders have been unable to agree on tougher measures to contain a second wave.
17.10.2020 - 17:34

Chancellor Angela Merkel urged Germans to curb social contacts and keep travel to a minimum on Saturday after federal and state governments struggled to agree on how to contain a second wave of coronavirus infections.

"WE HAVE TO GO FURTHER"

“We have to do everything to prevent the virus from spreading out of control. Every day counts,” Merkel said in a weekly video podcast.

While Germany’s infection rates are lower than in much of Europe, they have been accelerating and hit a daily record of 7,830 on Saturday, according to the Robert Koch Institute for infections diseases. The death toll rose by 33 to 9,767.

“We have to go further,” Merkel said. “I appeal to you: meet with fewer people, either at home or outside. Please forsake any journey that is not absolutely essential, every party that is not absolutely essential. Stay at home, where at all possible.”

Merkel’s appeal came as President Frank-Walter Steinmeier went into quarantine after a bodyguard tested positive for coronavirus, his office said. Steinmeier, whose role is largely ceremonial, has also been tested and is awaiting the result.