Amid protests from both the German population and opposition parties, the Bundestag, the lower house of the German legislature approved a unified federal system of automatic coronavirus restriction measures that will kick in on a mandatory and automatic basis, daily Magyar Nemzet reports.
The new federal law stipulates that in any administrative district where seven-day moving average of new infections exceeds 100 per 100,000 population, the measures will kick in without any action on the part of the federal or regional governments.
So far, the federal government issued countrywide recommendations in Germany, but the amount to which these were implemented was up to the regional governments that make up the 16 federals states in the country.
The federal government’s proposal was passed by roll-call vote with 342 votes in favor, 250 against and 64 abstentions. Thousands protested against the so-called “emergency brake system” in the area of the Bundestag building, the Reichstag. Police dispersed a demonstration, and seven people were detained. In the Bundestag, the opposition was also sharply critical of the proposal.
Most notably, the Alternative for Germany (AfD) party to the right of the CDU/CSU alliance with the Social Democrats (SPD), whose co-leader, Alexander Gauland, believed that the emergency brake system was an attack on freedoms, federalism and common sense. The Liberal Free Democratic Party (FDP) has announced that they will go to the Constitutional Court because they find the rules unconstitutional.
The most severe restriction is that in the case of a seven-day infection frequency of more than one hundred, a partial curfew will be imposed between 10:00 p.m. to 5:00 a.m.
The partial curfew means that dog walking, health walks and jogging are still allowed until midnight, and one can leave home at any time for urgent matters such as work. The emergency brake system also includes a number of additional rules such as the one stipulating that shops selling non-essential goods can only deliver pre-ordered goods to customers.