Angela Merkel on the corona crisis: "The restrictions are rules, not recommendations"

Meetings of more than two people in public are prohibited for at least two weeks to slow the spread of the coronavirus. The federal and state governments decided on the drastic contact restrictions on Sunday afternoon. Chancellor Angela Merkel subsequently noted at a press conference that these are rules, not recommendations. The police will ensure that they are observed.

"The most important thing is that the distance rules are followed," she said. "Please pull everyone along. Show reason and heart," she continued to appeal. His own behavior is now the most effective means – a vaccine against the virus has not yet been found. The "overwhelming majority" of Germans understood that in this situation everyone was important. "Thank you for that," said Merkel. The restrictions meant sacrifice and sacrifice, both economically and humanly, when it was no longer easy to visit grandparents or meet friends, Merkel said. In principle, however, the same rules would apply throughout Germany. So everyone knows exactly where he is. "This is how we save lives."

The Sunday agreement includes the following points: Citizens are encouraged to reduce contact with people outside of their own household to an absolutely necessary minimum; wherever possible, the public is open to people other than their own Households, a minimum distance of at least 1.5 meters, better still two meters. Spending time in public space is only allowed on your own, with another person who does not live in the household or with members of your own household. Violations of the contact restrictions should be monitored by the regulatory authorities and the police and sanctioned in the event of violations, such as the way to work, emergency care, shopping, visits to the doctor, participation in meetings, required appointments and tests, help for other or individual sports and exercise The fresh air and other necessary activities are of course still possible. Groups of people celebrating in public places, in apartments and private facilities are unacceptable given the serious situation in our country. Violations of the contact restrictions are to be monitored by the police and law enforcement agencies and sanctioned in the event of violations. This does not include the delivery and collection of take-away meals for consumption at home. Service companies in the field of personal care such as hairdressers, cosmetic studios, massage practices, tattoo studios and similar companies are closed because physical proximity is essential in this area. Medically necessary treatments continue to be possible. In all companies, and especially those with public traffic, it is important to comply with hygiene regulations and implement effective protective measures for employees and visitors. These measures should be valid for at least two weeks. Merkel emphasized that this provides a basic framework for a nationwide regulation was achieved. Previously, a number of federal states had passed rules by themselves. Merkel justified this with the different levels of concern among the countries, for example due to the proximity to the border. "Everyone is working towards a major, indeed vital goal: to gain time in the fight against the virus," said the Chancellor.

She was convinced that an agreement could also be reached with the Federal States on the Infection Protection Act. In the event of a crisis, such as the current epidemic, the Federal Ministry of Health would like to strengthen federal competencies in order to prevent a patchwork of regulations in federal Germany. The Federal Council should approve the reform next Friday.
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