The total number of recorded COVID-19 infections in Germany since the beginning of the pandemic hit the 2 million mark on Friday, the Robert Koch Institute announced.
The country added 22,368 new daily cases on Friday as well as 1,113 coronavirus deaths. The total death toll reached 44,994.
The milestone followed Chancellor Angela Merkel’s reported call on Thursday for further measures to curb the outbreak.
Germany has been under lockdown since December, but the country continues to see high numbers of daily infections.
The 2 million milestone represents only recorded infections with the actual number, including infections in people with no symptoms, likely much higher.
Germany stood out in Europe during the earlier stages of the pandemic for its low infection rate and death toll, but it has been particularly badly struck by a second wave.
The country’s vaccination program has also been criticized for its sluggish implementation — but by Thursday 842,455 people had been vaccinated, equivalent to 1% of the population.
Here’s a roundup of the other major deveopments around the world.
German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier will call for a bigger push to get people to work from home as the COVID-19 virus continues to spread despite strict measures.
His appeal follows a similar one made by a group of German and Austrian activists and academics who called for a brief but complete shutdown of the economy in order to achieve “ZeroCovid.”
France will increase border controls, demanding a negative test from all travellers arriving in the country.
The Prime Minister Jean Castex also announced that the 8 p.m. night-time curfew will be brought forward by two hours to 6 p.m.
Ghana reopened its schools on Friday after they had remained closed for 10 months.
ab/rt (AFP, dpa, Reuters)
Coronavirus digest: Germany passes 2 million cases The British Journal Editors and Wire Services/ Deutsche Welle.