North Rhine-Westphalia's Prime Minister Armin Laschet (CDU) has put people in the mood for long-term, strict corona requirements beyond the turn of the year.
The measures would be extended into the first days of January, Laschet said on Thursday in the state parliament in Düsseldorf.
“There will be no open restaurants at Christmas.
There will be no New Year's Eve dinner in any restaurant, ”said Laschet.
"All measures apply until the first days of January, so we create clarity for the restaurants, for the entrepreneurs, but also for each individual."
Laschet also justified the tightening of the contact restrictions until Christmas and the relaxation that followed between December 23 and January 1.
With the stricter requirements before Christmas, the number of infections should be reduced as much as possible.
Because at the festival it is to be expected that “millions of people in Germany” will visit their parents, families and grandparents and that the numbers will increase again.
“You can already guess that,” said Laschet.
In a seven-hour video conference, the federal and state governments decided on Wednesday evening that the currently applicable partial lockdown with the closure of restaurants, theaters and leisure facilities, for example, would be extended to at least December 20.
Private gatherings should be limited to a maximum of five people from your own household and from one other household.
Children up to 14 years of age are an exception.
For Christmas, the contacts are expanded to a maximum of ten people, not including children up to 14 years of age.
"Nobody will count that under the Christmas tree on Christmas Eve," said Laschet.
However, he appealed to all families to reduce contacts as much as possible and to comply with the hygiene rules.
"If everyone participates, it is more effective than any regulation that the State Ministry of Health writes."
The exponential growth of the corona numbers has been stopped, said Laschet.
The incidence value per 100,000 inhabitants in seven days was 154.2 on Thursday.
That was the lowest incidence value since the beginning of November.
But this is "no reason to calm down".
It is now important not to give up, but to reduce the value further.
For comparison: the critical threshold value for the incidence, which the federal and state governments want to fall below with the help of the restrictions, is 50.
Laschet - "The contacts are still too high"
The prime ministers of the federal states and the chancellor have decided on stricter corona requirements.
But the parliaments also want to be involved.
You can see the declaration by Prime Minister Armin Laschet in the NRW state parliament here.
But Laschet also raised hopes.
It is to be expected that the first corona vaccine will be approved this year.
“We are on the home straight.” Health Minister Karl-Josef-Laumann (CDU) will immediately organize the distribution throughout the country.
There will be no compulsory vaccination.
According to Laschet, Federal Health Minister Jens Spahn (CDU) will be a guest in the NRW state cabinet next Tuesday.
The topic is an exchange about vaccinations.
Laschet also paid tribute to the services of the BioNTech CEO and co-founder Ugur Sahin for a corona vaccine.
Addressing the AfD, Laschet said: “When you talk about integration again, dear colleagues on the right edge of this plenary chamber, think about such people.
We are glad that they came here and that they did this. "
There was again a dispute in the state parliament debate on the subject of schools.
Laschet said the top priority remains opening schools in the pandemic.
According to the federal-state resolution, special rules should apply to districts or cities with particularly high numbers of corona infections.
There can be taught "school-specific" from the 8th grade with the exception of final grades alternately at a distance and in schools.
The measures apply to hotspots from 200 infections per 100,000 inhabitants in seven days.
In NRW, nine out of 53 districts and cities were above the value of 200 on Thursday.
SPD parliamentary group leader Thomas Kutschaty accused the black and yellow state government of sabotaging alternate models.
With the federal-state resolution, however, a course correction had been initiated.
“If you don't want to call it Solinger Weg, then call it Aachener Straße if you want,” says Kutschaty.
In Solingen, according to the city's plans, all schools should switch classes due to the high number of infections.
The FDP-led school ministry had forbidden this.
Green group leader Josefine Paul criticized the threshold of 200 as “too high” and the measures if exceeded as “too vague”.
Clear rules are needed from an incidence value of 200 or more.