Germany Extends Lockdown, Calls For Ski Resorts in Europe to Close

German Chancellor Angela Merkel extended the lockdown measures through mid-December, which are likely to remain until early January due to the continued rise of COVID-19 cases.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel extended the lockdown measures through mid-December, which are likely to remain until early January due to the continued rise of COVID-19 cases.

“Given the high number of infections, we assume that the restrictions which are in place before Christmas will continue to be valid until the start of January, certainly for most parts of Germany,” Merkel told the parliament on Nov. 26.

The “wave-breaker” lockdown, which was imposed last Nov. 2, will now be extended until Dec. 20, Merkel said after speaking with German regional leaders.

The measures require bars, restaurants, and museums to close and limit private gatherings to five people.

However, the measures will slightly ease from Dec. 23 to Jan. 1, allowing the number of people for private gatherings to increase up to 10 for the Christmas holiday, with the exemption of children under 14.

“This must not be a lonely Christmas for people in vulnerable groups,” Merkel said.

The decision came a day after Germany recorded 410 COVID-19 deaths in a day, its highest daily death total.

Merkel also said that Germany is trying to reach an agreement with other countries in the European Union to keep all ski resorts closed until early January to curb the spread of COVID-19 as ski season is approaching.

However, Austrian Finance Minister Gernot Bluemel said earlier this week that if skiing areas are to remain closed, the EU should cover for the possible loss of two billion euros.

During the first wave of the pandemic earlier this year, many tourists were infected with COVID-19 at the Austrian ski resort of Ischgl.


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