Merkel announces extension of measures until after Easter



German Chancellor Angela Merkel announced on Tuesday the extension of the measures in force in the country to combat the spread of the coronavirus until after Easter.

“We have agreed with the prime ministers of the ‘Länder’ to keep the measures hitherto in force,” Merkel said after the conference call held with the presidents of the German federal states.

The chancellor said she understood that the current situation is “a difficult situation for everyone” and thanked the citizens for respecting the measures in force.

Merkel reported by audio conference that it is “too early to think about a relaxation of the measures,” and confirmed that the situation will be re-evaluated after April 19, the day on which the school holidays officially end.

In addition, citizens are asked to give up “generally private travel and visits to relatives” on the occasion of Easter, which is prescribed for both local and interregional travel.

In all the federal states, grocery stores, pharmacies or basic goods establishments remain open, in addition to gas stations and banks. It is allowed to go shopping, walk the dog or walk, even do outdoor sports, but only individually.

The federal government and the “Länder” agreed on March 22 the partial closure of public life and the prohibition of meetings or group outings of more than two people (expandable to more, in the case of those who live in the same home ).

Schools and kindergartens also closed, and only a few shops remain, mainly those dedicated to supplying food, as well as pharmacies or gas stations. Some “Länder” have applied more restrictive measures.

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