German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s chief of staff says restrictions for unvaccinated people may be necessary if case numbers reach new heights in the coming months.
But Helge Braun said in an interview with the newspaper Bild am Sonntag that he doesn’t expect another coronavirus-related lockdown in Germany.
Braun said unvaccinated people may be barred from entering venues like restaurants, movie theatres and stadiums “because the residual risk is too high.”
Braun said getting vaccinated is important to protect against severe disease and because “vaccinated people will definitely have more freedoms than unvaccinated people.”
Braun said that such policies would be legal because “the state has the responsibility to protect the health of its citizens.”
Germany’s vaccine efforts have slowed in recent weeks and that has led to discussions about how to encourage those who haven’t yet received a vaccine to do so. More than 60 per cent of the German population has received at least one dose while over 49 per cent are fully vaccinated.
What’s happening in Tokyo
World No. 1 golfer Jon Rahm has tested positive for COVID-19 and has been ruled out of the Tokyo Olympics, the International Golf Federation said on Sunday.
The Spaniard tested positive in the final testing protocol before leaving for the Olympics, the IGF said.
It’s the second time in the last two months Rahm has had to withdraw from competition due to getting a positive COVID-19 test result.
The Tokyo Metropolitan Government reported 1,763 COVID-19 new cases of COVID-19 on Sunday.
Infections have been on the rise in recent weeks, reaching 1,979 on Thursday, the highest since January.
Athletes must wear masks throughout the Olympic venues, including medal ceremonies, the International Olympic Committee said on Sunday, but according to a new policy they are briefly allowed to remove it on the podium for a photo opportunity.
Masks are mandatory across all venues, both inside and outside for all athletes, staff and media, as part of Games organizers’ strict measures to combat the coronavirus.
What’s happening around the world
As of Sunday morning, more than 193.7 million cases of COVID-19 had been reported worldwide, according to Johns Hopkins University’s case-tracking tool. The reported global death toll stood at more than 4.1 million.
In Europe, Russia reported 24,072 new COVID-19 cases on Sunday, including 3,406 in Moscow, taking the official national tally since the pandemic began to 6,126,541.
The government coronavirus task force said 779 people had died of coronavirus-linked causes in the past 24 hours, pushing the national death toll to 153,874.
In Canada, people living in Quebec will be able to register for the province’s COVID-19 vaccine lottery, starting Sunday.
The province will hold weekly draws this summer, starting Aug. 6, for a total of $2 million in cash prizes and bursaries, in a bid to get as many people vaccinated as possible before September.
Adults can sign up to win money, and young people 12 to 17 years old can win school bursaries.
In Asia, Singapore’s health ministry reported 117 new locally transmitted COVID-19 cases on Sunday, slightly lower than the 127 cases reported the previous day.
Malaysia’s total number of cases since the start of the pandemic surpassed one million on Sunday after the country’s health ministry reported a record 17,045 new COVID-19 cases.
The total number of infections in the country stood at 1,013,438.