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"We have very, very difficult months ahead of us," Merkel warns

"We have very, very difficult months ahead of us," Merkel warns

"We have very, very difficult months ahead of us," Merkel warns

Faced with skyrocketing coronavirus case numbers in Germany, Angela Merkel has made an urgent appeal to CDU party colleagues, ahead of Friday’s “corona conference” with state leaders. Emphasising that Germany is facing a difficult phase, she said that the pandemic urgently needed to be brought under control. 

Merkel expresses concern about rising coronavirus cases

“The situation is threatening,” the chancellor told a Christian Democratic Union committee meeting on Monday. Bild reported that Merkel described the situation as “highly dynamic” and “dramatic”, and stressed that the rise in infections must be stopped urgently - or Germany could soon find itself in a “difficult situation” when it comes to the availability of intensive care beds. “Every day counts,” she said. 

With infection numbers doubling every seven days, the measures currently in place to contain the virus are not sufficient, Merkel said. The figures are rising so rapidly that health authorities are now having trouble tracing chains of infection. 

The Robert Koch Institute reported 8.685 new infections in the 24 hours to Monday morning - and experience has shown that the number of cases on Sundays and Mondays is lower than on other days, as fewer tests are carried out over the weekend. On Monday a week ago, the number of new infections was 4.325 - half this week’s figure. On Saturday, 14.714 new infections were confirmed - the highest number recorded in a single day since the beginning of the pandemic. 

German state leaders due to meet again this week

At another CDU conference on the weekend, Merkel’s message was much the same: “We have very, very difficult months ahead of us,” she warned, appealing to everyone to limit social contacts as much as possible. The chancellor is assuming that the number of infections will continue to rise sharply and that no major events will be possible until at least February.

According to Bild, Merkel expressed concern at this meeting about the upcoming conference with the leaders of Germany's 16 federal states, which is scheduled to take place between Wednesday and Friday in Berlin. In the past few days, there have been repeated calls for more uniformity in coronavirus restrictions nationwide, but Merkel reportedly said she “doesn’t have a good feeling” that any significant progress will be made. 

Abi

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Abi Carter

Abi studied History & German at the University of Manchester. She has since worked as a writer, editor and content marketeer, but still has a soft spot for museums, castles...

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