Germany’s Bavaria tightens restrictions to slow down coronavirus spread

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Bavaria, the largest state in southern Germany, has decided to impose a limited curfew and further restrictions to public life in order to slow down the spread of the new coronavirus, Minister President of Bavaria, Markus Soeder, announced on Friday.

“We are shutting down public life in Bavaria almost completely,” said Soeder, adding that the situation in Bavaria was currently not developing well.

Starting on Saturday, the population of Bavaria would be required to stay at home and only go out in exceptional cases during the next 14 days, he announced.

“Stay at home is the motto,” unless you have to work or need medical care, Soeder said. Getting fresh air was good, as well as sports or walking, but this has to be done alone or with the family. “No large gatherings of people are allowed in the future.”

He assured that supermarkets as well as banks in Bavaria would remain open. Hairdressers and hardware stores which had attracted too many Germans despite the restrictions would be closed.

Although people in Bavaria were still allowed to go to work, Soeder asked employers to allow working from home if possible and to ensure minimum distances between employees at the work place.

Visiting permits in hospitals and nursing homes were being further restricted and only permitted in exceptional cases such as dying relatives or for fathers during birth, said Soeder.

He stressed that the measures had also become necessary because many Bavarian citizens had not yet realized “the seriousness of the situation.”

“We now want to work together to get through this crisis,” said Soeder, adding that the decision had not been easy.

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