Berlin, April 16 : German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Friday defended her plans to introduce a strict night-time curfew in the wake of surging new coronavirus cases amid growing opposition to the proposed new law.
Speaking in Parliament, Merkel said the plan to impose the curfew in regions where the number of new Covid-19 cases rose above 100 per 100,000 inhabitants over a seven-day period was not new and had already been applied in several of the nation’s 16 states, reports dpa news agency.
Merkel’s so-called emergency brake plan, which includes a night-time curfew from 9 p.m. until 5 a.m., has come under criticism from both legal experts and opposition party members.
Launching a parliamentary debate on the new law, the Chancellor said measures in some other nations such as Portugal and the UK were even more restrictive than what is planned for Germany.
“The point is to reduce evening visitor movements from one place to another as well as the use of local public transport,” Merkel told lawmakers.
She conceded that the night-time curfew was “not a panacea”, but added it can have an effect when combined with other measures such as tough contact restrictions.
The advantages of this measure outweigh the disadvantages, Merkel added.
As of Friday, Germany’s overall coronavirus caseload and death toll stood at 3,095,016 and 79,520, respectively.