Coronavirus update: Germany seals border with 5 countries as number of cases rises

So far, Germany has recorded 11 deaths and 4,585 confirmed cases.

Amid the worsening coronavirus crisis, Germany has sealed its borders with five countries from Monday. The countries are Austria, Switzerland, France, Luxembourg and Denmark. So far Germany has recorded 11 deaths and 4,585 confirmed cases of coronavirus.

The borders have been temporarily sealed as a precautionary measure to contain the rapidly spreading coronavirus in the country. However, Germany has not shut down its frontiers with Netherlands and Belgium, which remain unaffected by the virus.

Border closure will not hamper the movement of goods

The new restrictions which come into force at 8.00 am on Monday, 16 March, but will not restrict the movements of goods and those who cross the border for work. Further, the German citizens will be allowed to get back in the country.

Coronavirus status as of 15 March, 2020
Coronavirus status as of 15 March, 2020 GISAID

According to Euro News, as per the restrictions, Germany's interior minister Horst Seehofer said those 'without a valid reason to travel will no longer be allowed to enter and leave Germany.' Stating that the move to temporarily shut down the borders is to stop the spread of the fatal virus, Seehofer said: "I decided today that border controls will be temporarily introduced on the borders with Austria, Switzerland, France, Luxembourg and Denmark. The controls will take effect from tomorrow morning at 8 a.m. (0700 GMT)."

"The virus was progressing rapidly and aggressively and that we must assume that the peak of this development has not yet been reached. So the situation is very serious," he said.

Representational Picture Xinhua/IANS

Germany imposes shut down on public places, schools

Germany's move to close its borders comes days after Denmark, Poland and the Czech Republic shut the borders to contain the spread. On Saturday, the Baltic states of Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia also sealed their borders.

Adopting stringent measures, the country also shut down its schools and nurseries with immediate effect till the end of April. According to Financial Times, bars, clubs, cinemas, theaters and concert halls have also been closed to contain the outbreak.

Speaking to Die Welt, Deputy leader of the Social Democrats' parliamentary group, Baerbel Bas called for stricter measures to stop new cases rising in the country. "If the number of new infections cannot be slowed down with current measures, a complete lockdown must be considered," she said.

Related topics : Coronavirus