Coronavirus: Germany tightens curbs and bans meetings of more than two

The country expands restrictions on social interaction as Chancellor Merkel goes into quarantine.

Germany has expanded curbs on social interactions to try to contain the coronavirus outbreak, banning public gatherings of more than two people.

In a televised address, Chancellor Angela Merkel said "our own behaviour" was the "most effective way" of slowing the rate of infection.

The measures included closing hair, beauty and massage studios. Other non-essential shops had already been shut.

Shortly afterwards, Mrs Merkel's office said she would quarantine herself.

A doctor who vaccinated her on Friday against pneumococcus, a pneumonia-causing bacteria, had tested positive for coronavirus. The chancellor, 65, will be tested regularly in the next few days and work from home, her spokesman said. 

Germany, Europe's largest economy, has so far confirmed 18,610 cases and 55 deaths from Covid-19, the disease caused by the virus.

What has Germany announced?

People will not be allowed to form groups of three or more in public unless they live together in the same household, or the gathering is work-related. Police will monitor and punish anyone infringing the new rules.

Restaurants will now only be allowed to open for takeaway service. All restrictions apply to every German state, and will be in place for at least the next two weeks.

"The great aim is to gain time in the fight against the virus," said Mrs Merkel, urging citizens to keep contact outside their own household to an absolute minimum and to ensure a distance of at least 1.5m (5ft) from another person when in public.

What's happening elsewhere in Europe?

 

Italy, the worst-hit European country, reported 651 new deaths on Sunday, bringing the total there to 5,476, according to the government. The figure is the second-worst daily total but less than that announced on the previous day.

The number of confirmed cases in the country - where people have been largely confined to their homes for two weeks - has risen from 53,578 to 59,138, the lowest rise in percentage terms since the outbreak began.

Earlier, President Sergio Mattarella said he hoped the rest of the world could learn from Italy's troubles. He said citizens across the European Union needed to feel the bloc was taking concrete action to combat the virus.

Meanwhile, Spain registered its worst figures so far after 394 people died in a single day, bringing the national total to 1,720. Officials said the number of new daily registered cases, like Italy, had also fallen from Saturday to Sunday.

The government is seeking to extend the state of emergency until 11 April, a step that needs to be approved by parliament. The measure introduced on 14 March bars people from all but essential outings.

"We're at war," Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez said, a day after warning that "the worst is yet to come". Also on Sunday, the government announced it would restrict entry at air and sea ports for most foreigners for the next 30 days.

In other developments:

  • UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson warned people to follow the government's advice or tougher restrictions would have to be implemented, as the number of deaths reached 281
  • France recorded 112 new deaths, taking the number of dead there to 674
  • The Netherlands and Greece also reported a surge in the number of deaths and cases

In the US, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio warned the outbreak would get worse, with damage accelerated by widespread shortages of key medical supplies. Across the country, there are now 31,057 confirmed cases and 390 deaths.

According to a tally by Johns Hopkins University, more than 310,000 cases of coronavirus have been confirmed around the world, with some 13,000 deaths. More than 93,000 people have recovered. BBC

 
 

Other News

.
Convenience stores become ideal heat shelters for Hanoi young people
Convenience stores become ideal heat shelters for Hanoi young people
SOCIETYicon  21/05/2020 

Convenience stores in Hanoi have become ideal heat shelters for many young people amid the blazing hot weather.

Private nursery schools face teacher shortage
Private nursery schools face teacher shortage
SOCIETYicon  21/05/2020 

Many private nursery schools in HCM City and neighbouring provinces are facing teacher shortage after three-month school closure.

Hanoi large trees left to die as construction stagnates
Hanoi large trees left to die as construction stagnates
SOCIETYicon  21/05/2020 

Over a hundred of large trees along Hanoi's Kim Ma Street which were relocated to a rented garden for the Nhon-Hanoi railway project are being left to die.

Over 1,000 experts coming to Quang Ngai to be quarantined
Over 1,000 experts coming to Quang Ngai to be quarantined
SOCIETYicon  21/05/2020 

The central city of Quang Ngai will receive and quarantine over 1,000 foreign specialists coming to work at the Dung Quat Economic Zone and Hoa Phat Steel Company.

Heavy rains forecasted to hit northern, central regions
Heavy rains forecasted to hit northern, central regions
SOCIETYicon  21/05/2020 

The northern and northern central regions of Vietnam would face downpours from this evening, May 21, following scorching hot days.

Vietnam to continue testing Covid-19 vaccine on mice
Vietnam to continue testing Covid-19 vaccine on mice
SOCIETYicon  21/05/2020 

Company for Vaccine and Biological Production 1 (VABIOTECH) under the Ministry of Health will conduct a second test of Covid-19 vaccine on mice next month.

Doctors to transfer British pilot to Cho Ray Hospital before lung transplant
Doctors to transfer British pilot to Cho Ray Hospital before lung transplant
SOCIETYicon  21/05/2020 

The country's 91st COVID-19 patient, a British pilot, will be transferred to the intensive care centre in HCM City’s Cho Ray Hospital to have a lung transplant when the patient is healthy enough for the procedure.

HCMC Hospitals report increase in heat-related illnesses
HCMC Hospitals report increase in heat-related illnesses
SOCIETYicon  21/05/2020 

HCM City and other localities in the south have recorded temperatures of 38-39 degrees Celsius in recent days, leading to more heat-related illnesses, especially among children and the elderly.

12 suspects involved in BIDV violations to be prosecuted
12 suspects involved in BIDV violations to be prosecuted
SOCIETYicon  21/05/2020 

The Supreme People’s Court has decided to prosecute 12 people involved in banking operation violations at the Bank for Investment and Development of Vietnam (BIDV).

Latest Coronavirus News in Vietnam & Southeast Asia May 21
Latest Coronavirus News in Vietnam & Southeast Asia May 21
SOCIETYicon  21/05/2020 

Eight wide-body aircraft transport Vietnamese medical supplies to US

Legal proceedings launched against deadly wall collapse case in Dong Nai
Legal proceedings launched against deadly wall collapse case in Dong Nai
SOCIETYicon  21/05/2020 

The police of the southern province of Dong Nai on May 20 decided to start legal proceedings against the deadly wall collapse case at the Giang Dien Industrial Park.

Court upholds sentences for defendants in fake medicine case
Court upholds sentences for defendants in fake medicine case
SOCIETYicon  21/05/2020 

The High-level People’s Court in Ho Chi Minh City on May 20 upheld the verdict handed down at the first-instance trial in a case involving the “manufacturing and trading of counterfeit medicine”.

Time to let motorbike’s little lights shine?
Time to let motorbike’s little lights shine?
SOCIETYicon  21/05/2020 

A new draft law by the Ministry of Transport is aiming to shed some light on Vietnam's traffic problem.

Learning pressure is the biggest concern for children: survey
Learning pressure is the biggest concern for children: survey
SOCIETYicon  21/05/2020 

A recent survey has found that learning pressure is the biggest challenge children face while staying at home due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Da Nang authorities asks for changes to building facades
Da Nang authorities asks for changes to building facades
SOCIETYicon  21/05/2020 

The People’s Committee of Da Nang has asked the two investors behind high-rise projects to change the glass used on the façade of the buildings by the end of this month.

In Vietnam, snake bites a risk in summer
In Vietnam, snake bites a risk in summer
SOCIETYicon  21/05/2020 

As summer arrives, so does an increase in the number of people bitten by venomous snakes.

Lychee farmers enjoy early harvest
Lychee farmers enjoy early harvest
PHOTOSicon  20/05/2020 

In the recent years, local farmers in Thanh Ha district, Hai Duong province have expanded areas growing early ripen lychees with better yield.

Charming white lotus flowers spotted in bloom on outskirts of Hanoi
Charming white lotus flowers spotted in bloom on outskirts of Hanoi
PHOTOSicon  20/05/2020 

With pristine white lotus flowers starting to enter full bloom in a thousand-square-metre pond located in Tam Hung commune of Hanoi’s outlying Thanh Oai district, 

Streets around Hanoi enjoy sight of blossoming lotus flowers
Streets around Hanoi enjoy sight of blossoming lotus flowers
PHOTOSicon  21/05/2020 

With beautiful lotuses serving to brighten up streets throughout Hanoi, many of the blossoming flowers can be seen being carried by street vendors in bicycles as they sell them at the start of summer, the traditional lotus flower season.

Mekong Delta healthcare system growing rapidly, eases pressure on HCM City hospitals
Mekong Delta healthcare system growing rapidly, eases pressure on HCM City hospitals
SOCIETYicon  21/05/2020 

The healthcare system in the Mekong Delta has been steadily expanding and becoming increasingly sophisticated, and the large number of choices available now is helping reduce overcrowding at HCM City hospitals.

 
 
 
Leave your comment on an article

OR QUICK LOGIN