MERKEL PRESSES GERMAN STATES TO GET TOUGH WITH COVID CURBS
Chancellor Angela Merkel pressed Germany's states on Sunday to step up efforts to curb rapidly rising coronavirus infections, and raised the possibility of introducing curfews to try to get a third wave under control.
Merkel expressed dissatisfaction that some states were choosing not to halt a gradual reopening of the economy even as the number of infections per 100,000 people over seven days had risen over 100 - a measure she and regional leaders had agreed on in early March.
"We have our emergency brake ... unfortunately, it is not respected everywhere. I hope that there might be some reflection on this," Merkel said in a rare appearance on broadcaster ARD's Anne Will talk show.
Coronavirus infections have risen rapidly in recent weeks, driven by more transmissible strains of the virus. Merkel's chief of staff warned earlier on Sunday that the country was in the most dangerous phase of the pandemic and must suppress the virus now or risk dangerous mutations that were immune to vaccines.
On Sunday, the incidence of the virus per 100,000 rose to 130 from 104 a week ago. The number of total confirmed coronavirus cases in Germany increased by 17,176 to 2,772,401, data from the Robert Koch Institute (RKI) for infectious diseases showed on Sunday. The reported death toll rose by 90 to 75,870, the tally showed.