Berlin Covid curfew shutting bars at 11pm is overturned by court because there's 'no evidence' it stops infections
A COURT has overturned an order to introduce an 11pm curfew for Berlin's bars and restaurants.
The German administrative court found that closing hospitality venues in the city from 11pm to 6am would not help fight the spread of coronavirus.
⚠️ Read our coronavirus live blog for the latest news & updates
A case was brought to court by 11 restaurant owners who claimed the rule was unfair.
The court found that infections in Germany were mostly spread by private gatherings, at community facilities, meat-processing plants, religious gatherings or through travel.
Closing pubs and restaurants at 11pm was a "disproportionate encroachment on the freedom" of the hospitality industry, the court ruled.
German authorities must now take the rule to a higher court if they want to force bars and restaurants to close early.
Britain has introduced a similar curfew for pubs, with closures enforced at 10pm.
Some have criticised the measure, saying hospitality venues are not a major source of infections.
HEADING FOR 'DISASTER'
German Chancellor Angela Merkel warned the country was heading for "disaster" after regional leaders chose not to approve proposed strict new measures.
Mrs Merkel said: "If you ask me what it is that worries me, it's the exponential rate of increase.
"We have to stop that. Otherwise, this won't end well."
Germany had a record-high 7,620 new Covid-19 cases in the past day, taking the national total to 352,107.
Many countries in Europe have announced strict new measures in an attempt to limit the impact of the fresh spike.
In Germany, politicians are debating whether to extend the school holiday break over the Christmas and New Year period to stop the spread of the virus among children.
Mrs Merkel wants to toughen up coronavirus measures, including requiring masks to be worn in more public places.
Proposals set to be discussed in Germany include new restrictions being introduced once a region has 35 infections per 100,000 people in one week.
Mrs Merkel has urged Germans to keep Covid cases manageable.
According to a draft policy paper, citizens are being asked to consider how "necessary and justifiable" private parties are.
The paper also warns that stricter restrictions could be brought in if infections continue to rise.
Source: Read Full Article