In Poland, the quarantine will be tightened from Saturday

The Polish government will tighten the quarantine in connection with the coronavirus for the Catholic Easter holidays — from March 27 to April 10. This year, Easter in Poland falls on April 4.

This was announced on Tuesday by Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki, RMF24 reports.

What exactly will change, the head of government promised to announce no later than Thursday, March 25.

“Around us, the Germans, the Czechs, other countries are introducing new restrictions, and we will also introduce some new restrictions for the next two weeks at the latest on Thursday, in order to suppress the virus again,” Morawiecki said.

He explained that the decision on specific restrictions will be made on the basis of several parameters: the number of hospitalized patients, the increase in infections, mortality, as well as based on the situation with the coronavirus in neighboring countries.

Morawiecki warned that Poland “just in case, should prepare for more complex scenarios” and promised support for the hotel business, gastronomy and tourism.

Recall that the German authorities will extend a strict quarantine until April 18-negotiations on this are underway between Chancellor Angela Merkel and the prime ministers of the federal states.

Merkel to testify in Bundestag over Wirecard scandal

The German Chancellor will appear as a witness before a committee investigating the scandal surrounding the bankrupt Wirecard company. The focus is on Merkel’s trip to China, where she defended the company.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel at the end of April is to testify as a witness before the Bundestag committee, which is investigating the scandal around the bankrupt German company Wirecard. This was confirmed by one of the committee members, the representative of the Free Democratic Party (FDP) Florian Towncar. “April will be intense,” said Tonka, commenting on the information that representatives of the country’s top leadership will address the committee.

Angela Merkel will answer the committee’s questions on April 23, German Finance Minister Olaf Scholz on April 22, German Economics Minister Peter Altmaier, and German Justice Minister Christine Lambrecht may also be invited to testify.

Representatives of the committee are primarily interested in the events of September 2019, when during a visit to China, Merkel defended Wirecard, although there have already been suggestions in the media that representatives of this company are spreading false information. The Chancellor is going to be asked, in particular, about the role of the lobbyist and former Minister of Economy of the Federal Republic of Germany Karl-Theodor Zu Guttenberg.

Wirecard helped make payments in the gray area of the Internet

Wirecard, founded in 1999, built an acquiring business, an intermediary service between credit and debit cardholders, banks, and merchants. Initially, she helped make payments in the gray area of the Internet, which more reputable companies did not want to take on: settlements in online casinos and on porn sites. The pinnacle of Wirecard’s success was the company’s joining the elite of German business in September 2018: inclusion in the Top 30 of the main German stock exchange index — DAX.

After the audit, Wirecard admitted that it had credited €1.9 billion from non-existent bank accounts. The price of her shares on the stock exchange collapsed, and she herself declared bankruptcy. The Federal Office for the Supervision of the Financial Sector called the situation “a disaster” and “shame”. International rating agency Moody withdrew Wirecard rating.

The European Union has agreed on the need to introduce vaccination certificates

The leaders of the EU countries agreed on the need to introduce vaccination certificates. This was stated by German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

According to Merkel, we are talking about electronic certificates that will be ready within three months. “We were all United in the fact that we need it,” she said. The documents themselves will be developed by European countries, and the technical issues and compatibility of certificates in all EU states will be worked out by the European Commission.

The Chancellor noted that the certificates can become the basis for travel within the European Union, as well as for entry into its territory from third countries.

Merkel opposed special conditions for those vaccinated against coronavirus

German Chancellor Angela Merkel spoke out against providing special conditions for those vaccinated against coronavirus now.

“While the number of vaccinated people is still much lower than those waiting for the vaccine, the state should treat both groups equally,” the Chancellor told the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung. At the same time, if we are talking about private contractual relations, “there is little that we can do on the part of the state,” she said.

“When a sufficient number of people receive an offer to get vaccinated and some do not want to get vaccinated, we will have to consider whether access in certain areas should be open only to those who are vaccinated. But we still have a long way to go,” Merkel said.

The Chancellor herself is going to be vaccinated when her turn comes, taking into account the priorities of the distribution of vaccines. “I think it is right, in addition to especially vulnerable groups and the elderly, to first invite those groups of the population who cannot keep a distance in their work to be vaccinated,” she said, noting that in her case, there is an opportunity to keep a distance.

Vaccination in Germany has been carried out since December 27 last year, while vaccines are used, which require two vaccinations to develop immunity. As of Monday, 1.7 million people in the country received both vaccinations, which is 2.1% of the country’s population (83.2 million as of the end of 2020). More than one and a half million people have received the first dose and are waiting for the second vaccination. Taking this category of people into account, 4% of the country’s population participated in the vaccination campaign.

Merkel announced the third wave of the coronavirus pandemic in Germany

German Chancellor Angela Merkel at a meeting with deputies of her conservative party said that the country is in the third wave of the coronavirus pandemic.

This is reported by Reuters with reference to two participants of the meeting.

“We are now in the third wave,” they quoted her as saying and said she had warned that any easing of the quarantine measures, introduced late last year and extended until March 7, should be carried out cautiously and gradually.

The closure of all secondary businesses and border controls with Austria and the Czech Republic, where there have been outbreaks linked to a more contagious strain of the virus, have helped Germany reduce the number of new daily COVID-19 infections.

But the slow introduction of vaccination and the risk of large outbreaks of strains already identified in Germany could make any easing of restrictions difficult.

“We can’t afford the ups and downs,” Merkel told the meeting, noting that she would like any return to normalcy to take place cautiously to avoid re-imposing the quarantine if the infection starts to grow again.

According to the sources, she added that increasing the availability of rapid tests and increasing testing capabilities can make a return to normal more confidence.

Recall that strict restrictions on the borders of Germany will be extended for another eight days, despite the criticism of the European Commission.