Germany has won international compliments for dealing with the corona virus. Budget generosity and swift steps have helped deal with the corona impressively. A large part of the flatterers noted favorably the German character, who obeyed the instructions.
This image suffered a not-so-simple blow over the past weekend, after 45 policemen were injured and 133 people were arrested during demonstrations in Berlin against restrictions imposed on the public to deal with the plague. The demonstrations continued today (Sunday), although the number of demonstrators has decreased significantly. This time most of the protesters made sure to wear masks and keep their distance.
About 20,000 demonstrators gathered at the Brandenburg Gate to mark “Freedom Day.” The crowd, a mixture of left-wing and far-right people and some conspiracy theorists shouted “we are the second wave”, demanded “resistance” and called the corona “the biggest conspiracy theory”. The demonstrators held signs that read “The drug is worse than the disease.”
The condemnations of the demonstrations were not long in coming. Most of them dealt, not surprisingly, with the demonstrator’s lack of interest in respecting the rules of social distance or wearing masks. Many of the defenders have called for heavy penalties on those who violate the restrictions, the purpose of which is to stop the transmission of the deadly virus. Quite a few demonstrators at the big rally on Saturday demanded that demonstrators remove masks.
Police in riot gear stormed a rally on Friday, removing hundreds of protesters by truck. Police in riot gear stormed a rally on Friday, removing hundreds of protesters by truck.
In a scene that seems familiar to those who follow the demonstrations in front of the Prime Minister’s House in Jerusalem, the police began dispersing the demonstrators in the late afternoon. Many evacuated, but several hundred protesters remained in the area of the Brandenburg Gate until the evening hours.
The focus of the violence was not on the Corona demonstration. In a demonstration against fascism in the Neuquen neighborhood of the city, which was unrelated to the corona demonstration, the demonstrators threw stones at police officers, used fireworks and hit two police vehicles.
Several officers were injured while dispersing the crowd, including three who were treated at a hospital after being hit by shrapnel. Additional protesters were arrested in a number of smaller demonstrations.
Despite the relatively low number of victims in Germany, authorities are concerned about the increase in the number of people infected in recent weeks. Politicians were quick to link Saturday’s rally to these concerns.
“Yes, demonstrations should also be possible during the corona periods, but not so,” Health Minister Jens Spahan declared. “Distance, rules of hygiene and masks are used to protect us all, so we treat each other with respect.”
Others expressed concern the day after worrying about the rising number of infected, and demanded punishments from those who break the law. Economy Minister Peter Altmeier told the DPA news agency that “those who intentionally endanger others should expect serious consequences”.
The Prime Minister of Bavaria, Marcus Suder, has meanwhile warned in an interview with Bild am Sonntag that now is “not the time for new relief or innocent negligence. The second wave is almost here. It is approaching Germany.”
Sudr further clarified that he opposes football matches with spectators, while senior German Bundesliga officials are preparing to convene this week to summarize guidelines for returning fans.
Yesterday (Saturday) 955 new cases of corona were documented in Germany. This is the highest number in the country since May 9, according to the Robert Koch Institute (RKI), a government body responsible for disease surveillance. So far, only 240 new cases have been documented. However, the relatively low figure is due to a lack of reporting by local authorities over the weekend.