Söder thinks the Corona warning app is a “toothless tiger” – Argentina has more than a million infected people

The health authorities in Germany have according to the Robert Koch Institute on Tuesday morning 6868 new corona infections reported within 24 hours. The number of new infections reached 7830 on Saturday for the third time in a row, a high since the start of the corona pandemic in Germany. However, the current values ​​are only partially comparable with those from spring, because significantly more tests are now carried out – and thus more infections are discovered.

According to the RKI, at least 373,167 people in Germany have been proven to have been infected with the Sars-CoV-2 virus since the beginning of the corona crisis (as of October 20, 12:00 am). The Number of deaths in connection with a corona infection was therefore 9836. That was 47 more than the day before. According to estimates by the RKI, there are around 298,300 recovered.

The number of reproductions, or R value for short, was 1.35 in Germany according to the RKI management report on Monday (previous day: 1.44). This means that ten infected people infect an average of 13 to 14 other people. The R-value depicts the infection rate about one and a half weeks beforehand.

In addition, the RKI gives a so-called in its management report Seven-day R. on. The value relates to a longer period of time and is therefore less subject to daily fluctuations. According to RKI estimates, this value is now at 1,25 (Previous day: 1.35). It shows the infection process from 8 to 16 days ago.

.

Christian Drosten thinks circuit breakers are possible

Christian Drosten

The virologist brings temporary lockdowns into play.

(Photo: dpa)

Düsseldorf Despite the exponential growth in the number of cases in Germany, Chancellor Angela Merkel wants to prevent a nationwide lockdown as far as possible. “We cannot afford a second wave economically either,” said the CDU politician after the meeting with the prime ministers of the federal states last week.

SPD health expert Karl Lauterbach and virologist Christian Drosten are now bringing short and time-limited shutdowns into play, also known as “circuit breakers”, in order to slow the spread of the corona virus and thus keep the economic consequences within limits.

While this measure is still being discussed in Germany and England, Wales has already decided: There will be a two-week lockdown there from Friday. “Everyone in Wales will be required to stay at home,” said Mark Drakeford, Prime Minister of the British part of the country, to journalists on Monday.

Only employees of absolutely necessary facilities are exempt from the curfew. Most shops would also have to close. Such a hard and profound lockdown was necessary to get the rising number of infections under control, said Drakeford.

Drosten wrote on Twitter on Sunday that a circuit breaker was an option in the autumn and Christmas holidays. This could possibly limit the economic impact. The virologist from the Berlin Charité referred in his tweet to a British study. In it, the authors describe the positive effects of short shutdowns, which are directly communicated to the population as temporary.

Lauterbach also commented on the measure in the short message service: The study is also of interest to Germany, “because systematic short shutdowns could interrupt exponential growth while minimizing economic and school costs”.

According to Lauterbach, planned interruptions also increase the acceptance of the measure among the population.

The SPD politician sees an urgent need for action: If the corona virus continues to spread rapidly in Germany, Lauterbach expects shutdowns. “It’s very simple. The R value is around 1.3. If we don’t get it down, the daily number of cases will rise so quickly within a very short time that the clinics and health authorities will be overrun. Then there will be local shutdowns, “the doctor told the newspapers of the Funke media group.

The reproductive number, also known as the “R value”, indicates how many other people an infected person will infect.

According to the situation report from the Robert Koch Institute (RKI) on Sunday, the seven-day R value in Germany is 1.35. On Monday, the RKI reported 4,325 new cases in Germany. The number is comparatively low compared to the previous days, since not all health authorities transmit data to the RKI at the weekend.

Compared to last Monday, on which the RKI announced 2467 new infections, the significant increase in the number of cases in the Federal Republic is evident.

More: Follow the current developments in the corona crisis in our news blog

.

Passengers shouldn’t hope for quick tests

Corona test center at Stuttgart Airport

Aviation is hoping for so-called rapid tests in order to be able to resume intercontinental connections.

(Photo: dpa)

Frankfurt They should be the solution for pandemic-ridden aviation: rapid tests that are carried out immediately before departure and, if the result is negative, could enable passengers to make intercontinental flights again without problems. The compulsory quarantine otherwise provided for in the travel regulations of many countries could thus be dispensed with according to the ideas of the aviation industry. It is the main reason why people are currently barely booking flights.

Lufthansa boss Carsten Spohr has high hopes for this rapid test, as does his colleagues in the global airline association Iata. And many travelers are longingly waiting for such an opportunity.

But the straw that everyone clings to is thin. In order to make intercontinental flights possible again, as many countries as possible would have to recognize the tests – and quickly. Above all, however, politicians have long planned the quick checks elsewhere in view of the rapidly increasing number of infections: for example for the care and hospital sectors.

This is a problem for aviation companies. Because one thing is clear: Without up-to-date evidence that a passenger does not have Corona, air traffic will not pick up again. It is now generally accepted that the risk of infection in the aircraft is very low, provided that the passengers adhere to the requirements – such as wearing a mouth and nose cover. Even the Robert Koch Institute (RKI) recently stated that there is no increased risk of infection when traveling by air.

But because the number of infections is reaching record levels worldwide, there is a growing risk that Covid-19 will be transported from one place to another by traveling, even if you are relatively well protected on the plane yourself. It is therefore unlikely that governments will decide to relax air traffic anytime soon. Rather, the protective measures are likely to be tightened further.

“Due to the technical characteristics of the aircraft, there is a higher risk of infection on the ground,” says Christoph Mostert, Managing Partner of the consultancy M2P Consulting from Frankfurt, which specializes in air traffic: “In order to regain customer trust and demand, uniform standards and fast, reliable ones must be used on the ground Give tests. This is absolutely possible if the processes at the airport are changed. “

That is why the airline managers and their lobbying association Iata are currently doing everything in their power to ensure that the quick test is accepted by political decision-makers. The association is in direct contact with governments and through the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), it says.

On the airline side, preparations for the use of such tests are in full swing. The three premium brands of the Lufthansa Group – Lufthansa, Austrian and Swiss – want to start the trial phase at the beginning of November. Austrian Airlines, for example, wants to implement a new test system together with Vienna Airport. It is planned that the tests will be carried out voluntarily and free of charge. The experience gained should then be used for a practical solution.

A pilot test with rapid tests has been running at London Heathrow Airport for several weeks. Emirates and Qatar Airways have already built this into their own processes.

Iata boss Alexandre de Juniac assumes that the planned rapid tests will cost less than ten euros. A result could be available within 15 minutes. The first tests are already on the market and have an accuracy of more than 99 percent. Medical staff is not necessary for the tests.

Rapid test from Bosch

The Stuttgart-based company has developed a rapid corona test based on the more reliable PCR technology.

(Foto: Bloomberg)

Many of these statements are correct, but there are some caveats. There are now some rapid tests approved in Germany. There are 18 manufacturers on a list of the Ministry of Health, including the Swiss pharmaceutical giant Roche. Its rapid antigen test provides a result within up to 30 minutes.

However, these antigen tests are not as accurate as the so-called PCR tests, which are also used to determine the current number of corona infections. The RKI expressly points out that an antigen test cannot completely rule out an infection. Conversely, an antigen test can give a positive result, even if the person tested is not infectious at all. “That is why a positive result in the antigen test must always be confirmed by means of PCR,” explains the RKI.

In addition, rapid tests must also be carried out by medically trained personnel. A laboratory is not necessary for this, but a package of intensive protective measures for the staff. Lufthansa, for example, wants to rely on experienced partner companies here. So far, they have been working with Centogene on the corona tests.

In fact, the federal government wants to make the rapid tests an integral part of the overall test strategy. The problem: the travel industry has so far played a subordinate role. The federal government has already acquired millions of antigen tests. But these are primarily intended for use in care and health facilities, for example for regular testing of employees, residents, patients, but also visitors.

Aviation would need millions of tests every day

In the traffic light system recently adopted by the EU Commission, with which risk areas are clearly identified using color, the rapid tests play a different role than the aviation industry hoped for. They should help to shorten quarantine times or to end the quarantine. However, it is not intended to prevent them entirely.

More on the subject:

A huge number of tests would be necessary for a widespread use. Even Iata President de Juniac expects up to five million tests per day in air traffic alone.

The desire in the aviation industry remains to revive the ailing business with rapid tests. A new development from Bosch gives hope. Together with the Ministry of Research, the foundation company has developed a rapid test based on the more reliable PCR technology.

With such a test, it takes around 40 minutes to get the result. That is significantly longer than the 15 minutes promised by IATA President de Juniac. But such a test could still be integrated into the processes at the airport without any major problems.

More: Asia’s chaotic new start in travel

.

More than 4,300 new corona infections on Sunday

Dhe health authorities in Germany reported 4325 new corona infections within 24 hours on Monday morning, according to the Robert Koch Institute. The value is comparatively low, also because not all health authorities transmit data on weekends. Based on the 2467 infections reported on Monday last week, the current value is significantly higher. The number of new infections reached 7830 for the third time in a row on Saturday.

According to the RKI, at least 366,299 people in Germany have been proven to have been infected with the Sars-CoV-2 virus since the beginning of the Corona crisis. The number of deaths related to an infection was therefore 9789. That was twelve more than the previous day. According to estimates by the RKI, there are around 294,800 people recovered.

Behavior is decisive

SPD health expert Karl Lauterbach is counting less on the containment measures in the fight against the corona virus. “It will depend on how the population behaves. That is more important than individual measures. Many editions are difficult to check in any case, ”the doctor told the newspapers of the Funke media group.

If the corona virus continues to spread so quickly, Lauterbach expects local shutdowns in Germany. “It’s very simple. If we don’t get the R value down, the daily number of cases will rise so quickly within a very short time that the clinics and health authorities will be overrun. Then there will be local shutdowns. “

According to research by the FAZ, the health authorities are already less and less able to determine the origin of infections.

R value increases to 1.4

The reproductive number, also known as the R value, indicates how many other people an infected person infects. According to the Robert Koch Institute’s management report from Saturday evening, the R value rose from around 1.3 to 1.4. It depicts the infection process about a week and a half beforehand.

In addition, the RKI gives a so-called seven-day R. The value relates to a longer period and is therefore less subject to daily fluctuations. It is now 1.35 (previous day: 1.37) and shows the infection process from 8 to 16 days ago

Chancellor Angela Merkel urged people on Saturday to limit social contacts and to travel less in view of the skyrocketing number of infections. “We now have to do everything we can to ensure that the virus does not spread uncontrollably. Every day now counts, ”said the CDU politician in her weekly video message.

Members of the Bundestag from several parties are now calling for parliament to have a greater say in the corona measures. There is a threat of a permanent shift in competencies away from parliament and towards government.

According to a survey, more than two thirds of Germans tend to be satisfied with the federal government’s corona crisis management. 68 percent of those questioned rated the leadership in a survey by the opinion research institute Kantar on behalf of “Bild am Sonntag” as “rather good”. For 27 percent it is “rather bad”. 4 percent answered “don’t know”.

.

Government puts crisis costs at almost 1.5 trillion euros – Lauterbach expects local lockdowns

The Federal government expects coping with the coronavirus crisis the public coffers 2020 and 2021 a total of 1.446 trillion euros will cost. This emerges from a response from the Ministry of Finance to a request from the left parliamentary group leader Dietmar Bartsch, about which the editorial network Germany reported on Sunday.

In total, there are costs for the health system as well as the procurement of medical material, the support and stimulus programs for the economy, international aid payments, declining income and higher spending by the social security funds as well as state guarantees in the form of guarantees, quick loans and the federal government’s participation in the European Reconstruction program included.

In the current year, the Ministry of Finance expects crisis costs of 400.4 billion euros for the federal government alone. The budgets of federal states and municipalities will be burdened with an additional 89 billion euros. The Ministry of Finance forecasts the additional expenditure and loss of income at the social security funds at 26.5 billion euros. For 2021, the ministry is planning additional corona-related burdens for the federal budget of 74 billion euros.

The budgets of the federal states and municipalities are likely to be burdened with an additional 27.3 billion euros, social security with 2.8 billion. All in all, the budget-effective corona measures would be 619.9 billion euros. “Added to this are the state guarantees, which the Ministry of Finance specifies as 756.5 billion euros for the federal government and 69.8 billion euros for the states.” However, it is still unclear whether there will really be losses in the end.

.

It is in the hands of the citizens

SPD health expert Karl Lauterbach is counting on people’s behavior in the fight against the coronavirus – less on containment measures. “It will depend on how the population behaves. That is more important than individual measures. Many editions are difficult to check in any case, ”the doctor told the newspapers of the Funke media group.

If the corona virus continues to spread so quickly, Lauterbach expects local shutdowns in Germany. “It’s very simple. The R value is around 1.3. If we don’t get it down, the daily number of cases will rise so quickly within a very short time that the clinics and health authorities will be overrun. Then there are local shutdowns. ”The reproduction number, also known as the R value, indicates how many other people an infected person infects. According to the Robert Koch Institute’s management report from Saturday evening, the R value was 1.4.

Early on Sunday morning, the Robert Koch Institute reported 5587 new corona infections in Germany, a week earlier there were 3483 new cases. On Saturday a high of 7830 was reached for the third time in a row. The number of cases recorded is usually lower on Sundays and Mondays, also because not all health authorities transmit data to the RKI on the weekend.

Merkel calls for contact restrictions

Chancellor Angela Merkel asked people on Saturday to limit social contacts and to travel less in view of the skyrocketing number of corona infections. “We now have to do everything we can to ensure that the virus does not spread uncontrollably. Every day now counts, ”said the CDU politician in her weekly video message.

The CDU politician received support for her appeal from Bavaria’s Prime Minister Markus Söder. The CSU boss said “Bild am Sonntag”: “The situation is serious. If we don’t take countermeasures quickly, Corona will get out of control. If you hesitate, you risk a second lockdown. Carefulness, caution and solidarity have never been as important as they are now. “On the other hand, criticism came from FDP leader Christian Lindner, he told the newspaper:” If the Chancellor sees such a drama, she must immediately submit a government statement. A podcast does not replace the debate in the Bundestag when it comes to fundamental rights. “

SPD leader Norbert Walter-Borjans called on the younger generation to be more circumspect and solidarity. “We have to say very unequivocally to this generation, which is an important warning in our society on many ethical issues such as climate protection or international conflicts: This is not just about you, but your behavior is also endangering others, especially the weaker ones “, Said Walter-Borjans the” mirror “. At the same time, he emphasized that one should “not assume a whole generation of bad character”.


President Frank-Walter Steinmeier is still in quarantine in his service villa.
:


Image: AFP

Saxony’s Prime Minister Michael Kretschmer is calling for greater support from the Bundeswehr in the health authorities in the fight against the corona virus. “We are in the exponential phase,” said the CDU politician of “Bild am Sonntag”. “We have to expect that the number of new infections will double every three or four days. This pushes the health authorities to their limits in the follow-up of contacts of positively tested cases and we can no longer break the chains of infection. “

According to Kretschmer, the health authorities urgently need to be upgraded. “The Bundeswehr has to be more closely involved and employees from the state ministries have to be seconded. The police must help the regulatory authorities to control the measures. “

According to a survey, more than two thirds of Germans tend to be satisfied with the federal government’s corona crisis management. 68 percent of those questioned rated the leadership in a survey by the opinion research institute Kantar on behalf of “Bild am Sonntag” as “rather good”. For 27 percent it is “rather bad”. 4 percent answered “don’t know”.

On Saturday, the Federal President’s Office announced that Federal President Frank-Walter Steinmeier had gone into quarantine. One of his bodyguards had tested positive for the virus. A first corona test with the head of state was negative. Steinmeier will of course remain in quarantine, currently he is in his service villa in Berlin-Dahlem, it said. Steinmeier will be tested repeatedly in the coming days.

.

Corona, numbers and data: 53,000 new infections in the USA, 30,000 in France – record values ​​in Europe

Panorama Numbers and dates

53,000 new infections in the US, 30,000 in France – record levels in Europe

| Reading time: 4 minutes

Europe is rushing into a state of emergency

The number of infections is rising significantly not only in Germany, but also in neighboring countries. Many states have therefore drastically tightened the corona rules again. The EU summit in Brussels was all about the pandemic.

Spain has long been superseded as Europe’s hotspot: the Czech Republic, Belgium and the Netherlands have long reported the highest numbers of infections by a large margin. The numbers from Germany also continue to cause concern. An overview in graphics and numbers.

Dhe Corona situation in Europe is getting worse. More and more countries are reporting record numbers of new infections. In Germany, the reports from the health authorities on Saturday remained, as expected, below the record values ​​that the Robert Koch Institute had reported in the past few days. Nevertheless, RKI reported early Sunday morning 5587 New infections an extraordinarily high number compared to the 3483 infections last Sunday.

The number of new infections reached 7830 for the third time in a row on Saturday. In its situation report from Saturday evening, the RKI points out that now more than half of all counties have an increased spread of the coronavirus of more than 25 detected infections per week and 100,000 inhabitants.

This is where you will find third-party content

In order to interact with or display content from third parties, we need your consent.

Since the beginning of the Corona crisis, according to the RKI, at least 361.974 People in Germany have been proven to be infected with the Sars-CoV-2 virus (as of October 18, 12:00 am). The number of deaths in connection with a corona infection was therefore 9777. That was ten more than the previous day. The RKI estimates that there are around 291,900 recovered.

This is where you will find third-party content

In order to interact with or display content from third parties, we need your consent.

The reproduction number, in short R value, was included in Germany according to the RKI situation report on Sunday 1,44 (Previous day: 1.40). This means that an infected person infects just under 1.3 other people on average. The R-value depicts the infection rate about one and a half weeks beforehand. In addition, the RKI gives the so-called seven-day R with 1.35 in its current management report. The value relates to a longer period and is therefore less subject to daily fluctuations.

This is where you will find third-party content

In order to interact with or display content from third parties, we need your consent.

In Europe several countries reported record levels of new infections. France reported almost 30,000 new infections on Sunday. The cases are over 29.837 The Ministry of Health announced that it has risen to a total of 897,034. Another 85 people died from or with the virus. The total death toll in France is 33,477.

When the 10,000 mark was exceeded for the first time, the number of new corona infections in Czech Republic reached a record high. In the EU country were on Friday 11.105 positive tests recorded within 24 hours, according to data from health officials on Saturday. That was the highest recorded value on a day since the beginning of the pandemic. The previous high of almost 9700 new infections had been registered the day before. In the Czech Republic, more tests were recently carried out, after the positive rate was previously 14 percent. The country has a total of almost 10.7 million inhabitants so far 160.112 confirmed infections and 1283 Coronavirus-related deaths. In Prague, a field hospital is now being built on the exhibition grounds in order to be able to care for additional patients in the event that the hospitals are overloaded.

In relation to its inhabitants, the Czech Republic is by far the EU country most severely hit by the virus. According to the EU authority ECDC on Sunday, the 14-day incidence per 100,000 inhabitants was 828.4. Also badly hit in Europe Belgium (proportionately 700.8 new infections in 14 days) and the Netherlands (509.5). Follow only afterwards France (388,8), Great Britain (338,2), Slovenia (327,5), Island (325.4) and Spain (312,4).

This is where you will find third-party content

In order to interact with or display content from third parties, we need your consent.

Slovenia has now announced that it will give up contact tracking in view of the high number of new infections. Also reports record values Poland. Arrived within 24 hours 9622 Cases added, as emerged from data from the Ministry of Health on Saturday. That was the highest recorded value on a day since the beginning of the pandemic. On Thursday, the ministry announced that the number of new infections registered daily had exceeded the 8,000 mark for the first time. Overall, Poland recorded so far 167.230 confirmed infections and 3524 Coronavirus-related deaths. The country has around 38 million inhabitants.

In the EU and its most important European partner countries, more than 200,000 people have now died in connection with Covid-19 disease. As the ECDC figures showed, there have been just under 4.8 million confirmed corona infections in the European Economic Area (EEA) including Great Britain 200.587 reported Deaths. Most of the deaths were recorded in the United Kingdom (43,579), Italy (36,474), Spain (33,775), France (33,392), Belgium (10,392) and Germany (9777).

This is where you will find third-party content

In order to interact with or display content from third parties, we need your consent.

Worldwide there is according to Johns Hopkins University at least 39.67 million People infected with Covid-19 (as of October 18, 09:20 a.m.). Thereof 1.109.838 People died from the virus.

The USA vrecord according to the CDC disease protection authority now more than eight million Coronavirus infections. On Sunday were 53,157 new infections reported. The number of dead rises by 593 218.511.

This is where you will find third-party content

In order to interact with or display content from third parties, we need your consent.

Nine US states have highs in new infections. Wisconsin reported about 3747 confirmed cases within 24 hours. In some areas of the state, according to the authorities, only ten percent of the intensive care beds in clinics are free. “We are at a very critical point,” explains Governor Tony Evers.

You can follow all current and worldwide developments regarding the coronavirus in our live ticker.

Do you have any questions about the coronavirus? Here you will find the most important facts and information.

.

RKI numbers on Sunday: 5587 new infections in Germany

EAs expected, the health authorities in Germany reported comparatively few new corona infections within 24 hours at the weekend. The Robert Koch Institute (RKI) gave the value early Sunday morning as 5587. The number of cases recorded is usually lower on Sundays and Mondays, also because not all health authorities transmit data to the RKI at the weekend. Compared to the 3483 infections on Sunday last week, the current value is significantly higher.

The number of new infections reached 7830 for the third time in a row on Saturday. In its situation report from Saturday evening, the RKI points out that now more than half of all counties have an increased spread of the coronavirus of more than 25 detected infections per week and 100,000 inhabitants.

According to the RKI, at least 361,974 people in Germany have been proven to have been infected with the Sars-CoV-2 virus since the beginning of the Corona crisis. The number of deaths in connection with a corona infection was therefore 9777. That was ten more than the previous day. The RKI estimates that there are around 291,900 recovered.

The number of reproductions, or R value for short, was 1.40 in Germany according to the RKI situation report on Saturday (previous day: 1.22). This means that an infected person infects around 1.4 other people on average. The R-value depicts the infection rate about one and a half weeks beforehand.

In addition, the RKI gives a so-called seven-day R in its current situation report. The value relates to a longer period of time and is therefore less subject to daily fluctuations. According to RKI estimates, this value was 1.37 (previous day: 1.30). It shows the infection process from 8 to 16 days ago.

.

Merkel appeals to citizens in the corona crisis

BIn view of the continued rise in the number of corona infections in Germany, und-Chancellor Angela Merkel has urged citizens to help contain the pandemic. “We now have to do everything we can to ensure that the virus does not spread uncontrollably. Every day now counts, ”said the CDU politician in her weekly podcast published on Saturday. “I ask you: Refrain from any trip that is not really necessary, any celebration that is not really necessary. Please stay at home, wherever possible, wherever possible. “

Germany is in a “very serious phase,” said Merkel. “The number of new infections increases by leaps and bounds every day.” The pandemic is spreading again rapidly, faster than it did at the beginning more than six months ago. “The comparatively relaxed summer is over, now we are facing difficult months. How winter will be, how our Christmas will be, will be decided in the coming days and weeks. We all decide that through our actions. “

The health authorities in Germany recently reported 7,830 new corona infections within one day, more than ever since the beginning of the pandemic. This comes from data from the Robert Koch Institute (RKI) from Saturday morning. The day before, the highest value to date was registered with 7334 new cases. In order for the virus not to spread uncontrollably, the contact persons of every infected person would have to be notified in order to break the chain of infection, said Merkel. “The health authorities are doing great things, but where the number of infected people is too high, they can no longer keep up.”

Merkel asked: “So what can each of us do to ensure that the numbers go down again? A lot, most of it simply because each and every one of us consistently maintains the minimum distance, wears mouth and nose protection, and adheres to the hygiene rules. “

Merkel dissatisfied with the resolutions

Science clearly states that the spread of the virus depends directly on the number of contacts and encounters everyone has. “If each of us now significantly reduces our encounters outside of our own family for a while, then we can succeed in stopping and reversing the trend towards more and more infections,” says Merkel: “That is exactly my appeal to you today: meet with significantly fewer people, whether outside or at home. “

You know that not only sounds harsh, it is also a difficult waiver in individual cases, said the Chancellor. “But we only have to do it temporarily and we ultimately do it for ourselves: for our own health and that of all those who we can save a disease. To ensure that our health system is not overwhelmed, that our children’s schools and daycare centers remain open. For our economy and our jobs. “

That is why Germany got through the first six months of the pandemic so comparatively well because “we stood together” and followed the rules. “This is the most effective remedy we currently have against the pandemic. Now it is more necessary than ever. ”Last Wednesday, the federal and state governments tightened the measures to contain the virus in Corona hotspots. In the controversial ban on accommodation for vacationers from risk areas, however, there was no uniform line. Courts in several countries have now stopped the ban on accommodation.

According to information from the German Press Agency, Merkel had shown that she was dissatisfied with the decisions during the consultations with the Prime Minister in the Chancellery. “The announcements from us are not tough enough to avert the disaster from us,” said the CDU politician, according to participants who agreed. “It’s just not enough what we’re doing here.”

.

Politicians partly open to cordoning off corona hotspots

The federal government considers it possible to block areas. “The Federal Chancellor and the Prime Ministers noted months ago that there could also be restrictions on mobility in and out of the particularly affected areas as the most extensive measure,” said Chancellor Helge Braun (CDU) of the “Rheinische Post”.

Vice-government spokeswoman Martina Fietz had previously described restrictions on entry and exit “from a purely epidemiological point of view” as a way of preventing the virus from spreading. The aim is to “maintain as much as possible of public and private life”. A spokesman for the Federal Ministry of the Interior was reluctant to comment on the RKI initiative. There are “no concrete scenarios” for a deployment of the Federal Police in the event of lockdowns.

The issue is assessed differently in the parliamentary groups in the Bundestag. “I do not think it is out of the question that interventions in the freedom of movement and freedom of movement may be necessary again if the health system is overloaded,” said the legal policy spokesman for the SPD parliamentary group, Johannes Fechner, to the Handelsblatt.

The prerequisites for when the government may order this would have to be specified by parliament. “We are dealing here with massive encroachments on fundamental rights,” emphasized Fechner. A strict proportionality standard must be applied. “Above all, this means that no milder means may be available.”

Contradiction comes from within the Union. “From my point of view, the cordoning off of entire cities or regions is unconstitutional and also makes no sense,” said the CDU domestic politician Patrick Sensburg, the Handelsblatt. “It is expedient to comply with and control the existing quarantine rules.” New measures are not needed if only the current ones are implemented consistently. “Here, however, all federal states and municipalities must also fulfill the tasks that they have.”

The CDU health politician Tino Sorge, however, did not rule out the closure of certain regions as a “last resort”. “We should only discuss blocking hotspots as a last resort if human life cannot be protected in any other way,” Sorge told the Handelsblatt. However, he also emphasized: “Alarmism and overbidding competition for potentially conceivable measures do not help to improve the situation.” Most people already limited their travels today.

Wieler had justified his advance with the aggravated corona situation. Nine months ago, he could not have thought of locking off corona hotspots. “I can now imagine that such measures would be carried out,” said Wieler on Thursday the television station Phoenix. “If the measures are not tightened, the number of infections will continue to rise,” warned the RKI boss and named a number of up to 10,000 new infections daily. “Mobility is one of the drivers of this pandemic,” said Wieler.

CSU: RKI boss should substantiate the proposal

As if to confirm, Wieler’s authorities reported a new high on Friday with 7334 new infections within one day. It was only on Thursday that the authority recorded an all-time high since the outbreak of the pandemic with 6638 cases.

The FDP member of the Bundestag Konstantin Kuhle spoke of the “half-baked” proposals of the RKI boss that made many citizens “afraid”. “The drivers of the pandemic currently seem to be meetings in the private sector,” he told the Handelsblatt. It makes sense to cap and limit these. “A blanket restriction on mobility makes no sense at the moment, especially if it is announced in an interview without specific standards and criteria.”

The CSU internal politician Volker Ulrich also sees the RKI President Wieler’s duty to explain in such a proposal what he means by “locking off” risk areas and which authorities should implement such a measure with what means. From his point of view, closure is “neither an appropriate and certainly not a proportionate measure”.

The Greens were skeptical. “It is good and right to discuss all scenarios at an early stage, to weigh them carefully and on the basis of facts in order to then be able to make necessary and proportionate decisions,” said parliamentary group vice-president Konstantin von Notz. In order to achieve the necessary acceptance, however, Parliament and the public would have to be involved “as best as possible”.

“Mobility remains a key factor,” added von Notz. Therefore, everyone should think carefully about “which personal travel activities we can do without in favor of our solidary community in view of the current situation” – also in order to be able to jointly avert “extremely far-reaching” restrictions on freedom and encroachments on fundamental rights.

Bavaria lifts the ban on accommodation, Hesse is planning the same

In view of the escalating situation, Chancellor Angela Merkel (CDU) and the Prime Minister decided on new restrictions at a crisis meeting in Berlin on Wednesday evening in order to get the infection numbers under control again. However, the measures have already been legally attacked – with success in some federal states.

In Baden-Württemberg and Lower Saxony, administrative judges declared the controversial ban on accommodation to be illegal on Thursday. Other countries lifted a corresponding regulation of their own accord. In Bavaria, the ban expires this Friday. In Hesse, the planned abolition of the ban on accommodation is on the agenda for the meeting of the Corona cabinet on Monday. In Berlin, where the ban does not exist, the administrative court overturned the curfew for bars, pubs and restaurants from 11 p.m. to 6 a.m.

According to the Speyer constitutional lawyer Joachim Wieland, blocking off risk areas would not be constitutionally ruled out. It is indeed a “very drastic encroachment on freedom”, but it would be “constitutional as a last resort if there is a really great danger to life and health”.

The measure is also not out of thin air. It is already practiced in Spain. In view of the high corona numbers, the country’s government recently imposed a state of emergency on Madrid. In this way, the closure of the capital should be enforced against the will of the regional government.

Controls on the highway

In Spain, the Corona hotspot Madrid has already been cordoned off.

(Photo: dpa)

Gabriel Felbermayr, head of the Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW), named Asia and, above all, China, where the sealing off of hotspots has proven itself in order to curb the spread of the virus quickly. “But it is a much more draconian measure than a ban on accommodation, and enforcement, as the example of Asia shows, requires greater use of resources, and potentially even police operations,” Felbermayr told Handelsblatt.

“Not an easy task for political decision-makers”

From an economic point of view, however, “targeted closures” are probably better than general travel restrictions because they concentrate the adjustment costs on the geographical areas in which the infection rate is strongest. “This would create the right incentives to do everything locally to reduce the incidence,” he said.

But you have to think very carefully about the definition of hotspots: “It would probably have to be municipalities, not districts, and whether the critical incidence rate should be 50 cases per week and 100,000 inhabitants is also unclear,” he said.

Ifo President Clemens Fuest, in turn, believes that the economic impact would depend on what exactly “lockdown” means. “When it comes to restricting non-professional travel for a limited time, the economic consequences are likely to be manageable, but a complete closure for passenger traffic would have high economic costs,” he said.

In addition, politicians must consider the general consequences for consumer and producer confidence: “The lockdown would be a signal that the crisis is worsening significantly. In my opinion, this should only be done if the yield in terms of containing the epidemic is sufficiently high, ”he emphasized. This weighing is difficult and must be made on the basis of very incomplete information. This is “not an easy task for the political decision-makers”.

DIW President Marcel Fratzscher already fears that this consideration can only go wrong. “The success of corona measures depends first and foremost on their acceptance by people,” he told Handelsblatt.

Blocking off hotspots could not only be ineffective, but in the worst case even counterproductive if many citizens did not accept this and therefore opposed the entire strategy and other political measures. “Examples such as Spain and France show that tougher restrictions do not have to lead to a better limitation of the wave of infections in the long term.” Fratzscher therefore considers the sealing off of hotspots to be a “dangerous experiment”.

The Association of Towns and Municipalities considers it unrealistic to systematically cordon off entire hotspot regions in order to restrict mobility. General manager Gerd Landsberg spoke of “theoretical” considerations by the RKI boss that “generate additional fear”.

“What we need now is not fear, but prudence and discipline of all citizens,” said Landsberg. “It would therefore be important to have a communication campaign, not just in the hotspots, in order to repeatedly point out the need to comply with the rules via social media.” Landsberg emphasized that the key to fighting a pandemic lies in convincing people.

More: “Economically extremely expensive” – ​​The fear of the second lockdown

.