Merkel on Corona: Pandemic is a democratic imposition

BChancellor Angela Merkel (CDU) has prepared that the restrictions in the Corona crisis will continue for a long time. “I understand that this life under corona conditions has been happening to everyone for a very, very long time,” said Merkel on Thursday in her first government statement on the corona pandemic in the Bundestag. Nobody likes to hear it, but it is the truth: “We are not living in the final phase of the pandemic, but still at the beginning. We will have to live with this virus for a long time. “

Currently there are only interim results of the pandemic. And “this interim result is fragile. We are walking on thin ice, you can also say: on the thinnest ice. ”And the Chancellors further said:“ This pandemic is a democratic imposition, because it limits exactly what our existential rights and needs are. ”Such a situation be only acceptable and bearable if the reasons for the restrictions are transparent and understandable and if criticism and contradiction are not only allowed, but demanded and heard – mutually.

Nothing has been more difficult for her so far than restricting fundamental freedoms, said Merkel. They are particularly burdened with how people in nursing or old people’s homes would have to live largely isolated in this crisis, where loneliness is always present anyway. It was “cruel” if there could be no one there other than the committed caregiver. “Let us never forget these people.” The 80 to 90 year old people in particular would have founded and built up the country’s prosperity.

The question of how to prevent the virus from overwhelming the health system and then killing countless people will remain the central question for politics in Germany and Europe for a long time, said the Chancellor. “Our health system has so far stood the test.”

The Chancellor criticized the individual federal states’ approach to opening the restrictions. The implementation of the decisions of the federal and state governments from last week had an effect on them “in parts very research, if not to say research”. Merkel did not say which countries she meant.

The Chancellor also assured the World Health Organization (WHO) of full support. “The WHO is an indispensable partner and we support them in their mandate.” The American President Donald Trump had sharply criticized the WHO’s action in the corona crisis and announced the cancellation of the financial means. For this he has been sharply criticized internationally.

Shortly before the EU summit, Merkel again opposed the
Community debt with joint liability for coping with the Corona crisis.
In her government statement, she argued with the time factor. For such a step, all parliaments of the member states would have to decide that part of budget sovereignty would be transferred to the EU. “That would be a time-consuming and difficult process and none that could help directly in the current situation,” said the CDU politician. “It is now a matter of helping quickly and having tools in hand that can alleviate the consequences of the crisis.”

AfD wants to give responsibility to the citizens

For weeks, the EU countries have been fighting bitterly about so-called corona bonds or other forms of bonds. Countries like France, Italy and Spain – which were hit particularly hard by the pandemic – are demanding common debts for reconstruction. Germany, the Netherlands and other countries vehemently reject joint liability. The EU Commission has already developed a model that aims to limit joint liability. Commission boss Ursula von der Leyen wants to present the plan on Thursday at the EU summit. On this basis, the heads of state and government could explore further compromise lines and instruct Leyen to continue working on the plan.

The AfD now considers the contact restrictions imposed by the federal and state governments to combat the corona pandemic largely redundant. Since most of the citizens now kept their distance and exercised caution, it was now time to “transfer the protective measures into private responsibility,” said Gauland on Thursday in the Bundestag.

He accused Chancellor Angela Merkel (CDU) of having enforced the restrictions on fundamental rights due to the risk of infection with a “basta mentality”. The AfD sees its task in showing alternatives here. For the government, a crisis is always a temptation to “establish the state as a guardian of the citizens”. This is obviously not only the case in Hungary.

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