In her weekly video address Saturday, Merkel acknowledged the new rules are “tough” but insisted they are needed to curb the spread of the virus in the country.
Germany''s disease control agency on Friday reported 23,392 newly confirmed cases and more 286 deaths from COVID-19. Since the start of the pandemic, Germany has recorded almost 3.3 million cases and 81,444 deaths.
Merkel says the new measures, which automatically start regions with more than 100 newly reported cases a week per 100,000 inhabitants, are “urgently needed.”She cited Britain, Portugal and Ireland, which had infection rates sharply reduced during strict lockdowns, and defended Germany''s new restrictions against critics who have called them excessive.
Also, Germany is restricting travel from India because of concern about a mutated version of the coronavirus amid surging cases there.