Chancellor Angela Merkel (CDU) has criticized the plans of various countries particularly affected by the corona pandemic to allow hotel stays for family visits in large cities over Christmas.
In a virtual meeting of the CDU presidium on Monday, Merkel acknowledged the decision by the federal and state governments to relax the strict corona contact restrictions over the festive period, participants reported to the German press agency in Berlin on Monday. She was quoted as saying that she lacked the imagination to suspect that particularly affected countries wanted to open hotels.
Merkel justified her criticism that it was not possible to check whether only guests stayed in the hotels who actually visited relatives in the region. According to this information, the Chancellor referred to corresponding regulations in large cities such as Berlin. It cannot be explained that the nurses at the Berlin Charité also have to work through Christmas. Several participants reported that she did not explicitly speak of Schleswig-Holstein or Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania in this context. Falling incidence values can be seen in some territorial states.
The Chancellor spoke of positive developments in the corona infection numbers in Hamburg and Bremen. In contrast, there are increasing numbers in Saxony, Thuringia and Brandenburg. Regional measures would now have to be taken. Regional efforts are necessary. Merkel emphasized that in November there were as many corona infections as there were from March to October together – more than 500,000. After the deliberations of the CDU presidium, Merkel wanted to meet with the corona cabinet in the morning.
CDU boss Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer emphasized according to participants’ statements in the presidium meeting that there is unfortunately still a “sideways movement” in the number of infections.
After North Rhine-Westphalia, Lower Saxony, Hesse, Schleswig-Holstein and Berlin, Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania announced on Saturday that it would allow hotel stays for family visits over the festive period – contrary to a recommendation from the Chancellery. Baden-Württemberg also wants to allow such overnight stays over the Christmas period.
On Wednesday, the federal and state governments agreed that the partial lockdown with the closure of restaurants, theaters, fitness studios and leisure facilities should be extended until December 20. Private gatherings are limited to a maximum of five people. The contact restrictions will then be relaxed over Christmas to allow family visits.
© dpa-infocom, dpa: 201130-99-514728 / 4 (dpa)