Tuesday March 23, 2021
Advance by team to Merkel
All shops could close for six days around Easter
An end to the federal and state corona summit is not in sight, even ten hours after the start of the negotiations. Shortly after midnight, a drastic suggestion comes to the public: all shops could close for six days around the Easter holidays.
There is no end in sight at the federal-state conference on how to proceed in the pandemic. However, shortly after midnight, the stalled negotiations evidently began to move. According to ntv information, Federal Chancellor Angela Merkel, Bavaria’s Prime Minister Markus Söder, Berlin’s Governing Mayor Michael Müller and Vice Chancellor Olaf Scholz advocate a drastic step: All shops should close completely between April 1 and 6. That also applies to supermarkets. Effectively, taking the Easter holidays into account, this would mean that the shops would be closed for three days longer than originally planned. The advance is currently still being discussed between the federal states.
The round of the Chancellor and Prime Ministers met on Monday shortly after 3 p.m. for a virtual conference. An agreement was quickly reached that, in view of the sharp rise in the number of corona infections, the lockdown in Germany should be extended until April 18. In addition, the strict contact rules for visits to relatives over Easter should not be relaxed and the “emergency brake” should remain in place for shops, museums or sports facilities that have already been opened. After that, however, the negotiations stalled. In the evening they were interrupted for several hours.
The stumbling block is massive differences in restrictions on Easter holidays. In country circles there was talk of an open conflict between Merkel and five holiday countries that wanted to enable domestic tourism under strict conditions. “The federal and state governments continue to urge all citizens to refrain from travel that is not absolutely necessary at home and abroad,” said a draft resolution that was sent by the Chancellery on Monday shortly before the deliberations. “The appearance of various Covid-19 variants and their worldwide distribution have shown that cross-border travel must continue to be limited to the absolutely necessary minimum.”
Nevertheless, Schleswig-Holstein, Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania, Lower Saxony, Saxony-Anhalt and Rhineland-Palatinate advocate enabling “low-contact vacations” – that is, vacations in holiday apartments or houses, apartments or mobile homes, provided they have their own sanitary facilities Holidaymakers can also get food there. That obviously went too far for Merkel, which led to the interruption.