Germany is reportedly planning to extend the social distancing rules until at least July 5 to keep the COVID-19 outbreak under control amid defiance by two eastern states. German states like Thuringia and Saxony, in contradiction with the federal government’s guidelines, recently announced their decision to drastically reopen the businesses from June 6.
According to media reports, the draft policy allows the gathering of 10 people in public or meetings between people of two separate households. It states that there should be minimal contact and the number of people in a group should be kept as constant as possible, aimed at creating a bubble.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel has already urged citizens to not jeopardise the progress made by the country. Germany has reported over 180,000 confirmed cases of coronavirus and around 8,376 deaths so far, successfully flattening the curve. Though the European nation has been able to keep the mortality rate comparatively low than other neighbouring countries, Merkel had warned that the virus will be present for long.
During the 73rd session of the World Health Assembly (WHA), Merkel called on nations to work together to overcome the pandemic. While the German leader backed the World Health Organisation’s effort, she said that countries should work to improve procedures at the UN agency and ensure sustainable funding.
According to the latest report, over 5.5 million coronavirus cases have been confirmed worldwide with over 347,000 deaths, overwhelming health care facilities across the globe. The United States, Russia, Brazil, and the UK are the worst-hit countries due to the pandemic with around 60 per cent of death toll reported from these four countries alone.
The numbers get more sombre for the US as it has reported nearly 1.6 million cases, almost one-third of the worldwide cases, and almost 100,000 deaths due to the infectious disease. Within the United States, New York has reported over one-fourth of the nationwide coronavirus cases and almost one-tenth of the worldwide cases.
(With agency inputs | Image: AP)