Berlin (dpa) - Jens Spahn is in the focus of the pandemic like no other German politician except the Federal Chancellor - now the Federal Minister of Health has come under pressure.
Strong criticism from the ranks of the SPD and the FDP aimed at Spahn's Corona crisis management at the weekend.
The CDU politician defended his participation in a dinner last October, at a time when the number of infections was rising sharply again.
There is also criticism of Spahn in connection with buying a home.
DINNER IN LEIPZIG:
In view of the rising number of infections in Germany at the time, Spahn warned in an interview on the morning of October 20 about the risk of infection from partying and socializing.
The Robert Koch Institute appealed to the population to heed distance rules also outdoors, ventilation and face-to-face coverings.
On that day, according to "Spiegel", Spahn took part in a dinner with about a dozen entrepreneurs in Leipzig - around an hour and a half, as his Bundestag office announced to the German Press Agency.
The next day, after a cabinet meeting, a spokesman said that Spahn had cold symptoms.
Spahn was tested and received a positive result on the same day.
FDP general secretary Volker Wissing accused Spahn in the "Bild am Sonntag" of having defined "special rights" for himself.
According to Spahn's office, however, the rules of the Saxon Corona Protection Ordinance were observed at the dinner, according to the host.
After Spahn's positive test, the health department and the other participants in the evening were also informed.
According to the host, these were tested negative.
Spahn told “Bild am Sonntag”: “I would have deeply regretted infecting someone unknowingly.
That did not happen, probably also because of the precautionary measures. "
According to Spahn, it is unclear where he got his infection from.
After the event in Leipzig, according to Spahn's office, donations were received from participants - to support the work of Spahn's CDU district association Borken in the Münsterland.
The “Bild” newspaper (Saturday) reported that the participants had been asked by the host in the run-up to the evening to make donations for Spahn's federal election campaign - just below the limit of 10,000 euros for the obligation to publish donor names.
Spahn's office refers to the CDU Association Borken for specific questions about the donations.
He initially did not comment on request at the weekend.
DISPUTE WITH BERLIN LAND BOOKING OFFICE:
This thing is about a condominium that the politician had bought on Wednesday, August 21, 2017, according to his spokesman.
According to a report by the "Tagesspiegel", Spahn's lawyers sent a request to the Berlin-Schöneberg District Court last year.
The lawyers insisted on the correspondence between the land registry belonging to the court and responsible for the property and various media.
Spahn's lawyers wanted to know the names of press representatives who asked about his apartments and an acquired villa.
The German Association of Journalists accused Spahn of wanting to keep private real estate transactions "under the covers".
Spahn's spokesman emphasized that as a private person, Spahn had only asserted his right to the land registry.
"Which apartment he lives in and at what price he bought it is his private matter."
SPAHN'S CORONA TEST PROMISE:
"From March 1st, all citizens should be able to be tested free of charge by trained staff using rapid antigen tests."
Spahn announced this on February 16.
But now it is expected in government circles that the possibility of rapid testing for everyone will probably come around a week later.
SPD parliamentary group leader Rolf Mützenich was “irritated” that “the announcement minister Spahn” had to row back.
In fact, the federal states had concerns about the rapid implementation of the test regulation, and the Chancellor asked serious questions about the tests in the Corona cabinet on February 22nd.
It was also about specifically combining the tests with an opening strategy.
That should only happen on Wednesday, March 3, at the next federal-state corona round.
According to Spahn, lay self-tests should also be accessible to everyone after approval.
As expected, the first are allowed.
PANDEMIC EXPECTATION MANAGEMENT:
Spahn himself had suspected later criticism.
In April 2020, he said, “that we will probably have to forgive a lot together in a few months”.
Never before in post-war history would such far-reaching decisions have had to be made in such a short time, despite many imponderables.
He then appeared as an increasingly profiled crisis manager.
When the search for a candidate for chancellor at the CDU was even more open last year than it is today, Spahn's name was occasionally mentioned.
At the moment, the criticism of him seems to predominate.
There is little known about his withdrawal within the Union.
According to a survey, 56 percent of the population are now “somewhat dissatisfied” with Spahn and 28 percent are “somewhat satisfied”, according to the Insa Institute for “Bild am Sonntag”.
Above all, the pace of the vaccination campaign generated displeasure.
However, this corresponds to previous announcements by Spahn.
4.7 percent of the population have now received a primary vaccination.
In the summer - Spahn had announced - everyone could have a vaccination offer.
Merkel later specified that this should be done by the end of summer.
According to the latest information from the National Association of Statutory Health Insurance Physicians, full vaccination protection could be achieved for everyone on August 1st.
The EU Commission is primarily responsible for procuring vaccines in Germany.
For the vaccination organization, it is the federal states.
Three weeks before the start of the vaccination, Spahn said at the beginning of December: He was confident that the coronavirus would be under control in Germany in autumn.
Merkel said at the time that there was hope for vaccines: "Then we can defeat the virus step by step."
Since then, the virus mutations have been added - nobody is talking about a complete victory over Corona in the foreseeable future.
However, according to the Berlin virologist Christian Drosten, control in autumn is also possible.
Even in summer, depending on the further course of vaccination, there could be more and more immune protection in the population, he said on Tuesday.
The corona restrictions would then have to be less and less drastic.
Or that goes "into autumn".
© dpa-infocom, dpa: 210228-99-627529 / 2
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