If more people are not vaccinated against the coronavirus, the number of new infections could reach 100,000 a day, warned Helge Braun, head of the Office of the Federal Chancellor of Germany. He called for vaccinations and stressed that those who do not want to be vaccinated may face certain restrictions as a result.
In Germany, after more than two months of steady decline, the number of COVID-19 cases has been increasing since early July, mainly due to the spread of the more infectious Delta variant.
Helge Braun, head of the German Federal Chancellor’s Office, told the Bild am Sonntag newspaper that the coronavirus cases per week are increasing by 60 percent, although half the population is already vaccinated. “If the Delta variant continued to spread at this rate – and we did not counteract it with very high vaccination rates or a change in our behavior – we would have an incidence of 850 per 100,000 people in just nine weeks,” he said.
He added that this means about 100,000 new infections a day, which would lead to the quarantine of many people and chaos in the economy.
Appealing to the Germans to be vaccinated, Braun warned that those who did not want to be vaccinated may face certain restrictions. “This could mean that things like restaurant, cinema and stadium visits would not be available to unvaccinated tested people because the risk is too great,” he said.
About 60 percent of Germany’s 83 million residents have received the first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, and around 48 percent are fully vaccinated.
Possible successor to Merkel, opposed to compulsory vaccination
Braun’s statement was met with a quick response. Armin Laschet, the conservative candidate for successor to Chancellor Angela Merkel.
– I don’t think much about compulsory vaccinations or indirect pressure on people. We had a rule that you must be tested, vaccinated or cured, and I think it’s good, he told ZDF.
Main photo source: Moritz Frankenberg / dpa / PAP