COVID-19 cases in Germany soar past 10,000

COVID-19 cases in Germany soar past 10,000

People walk on a street on Mar 18, 2020 in Berlin's Prenzlauer Berg district
People walk on a street on Mar 18, 2020 in Berlin's Prenzlauer Berg district, despite the government's recommendations to stay at home. (Photo: AFP/John MacDougall)

BERLIN: Germany has recorded 10,999 cases of the novel coronavirus, official data showed on Thursday (Mar 19), with the number of new reported infections rising by 2,801 in a single day.

Twenty people have died from the viral infection, data from the disease control agency Robert Koch Institute (RKI) showed.

North Rhine-Westphalia remains the worst-hit state, with 3,033 COVID-19 cases, up 661 from a day ago.

The data is compiled from regional authorities of cases tested for the virus. But depending on an individual state's policies, many other possible cases may not have been tested because they show only mild symptoms or have not been in contact with a known case.

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With the contagion showing no signs of abating authorities have ordered schools closed, non-essential shops shut and made repeated calls for Germans to stay home.

With the pleas appearing to fall on the deaf ears of some, two small Bavarian villages have imposed a lockdown.

READ: Drivers turned back as Germany partially closes borders to fight coronavirus

Leaders in bigger cities and regions have also warned that they may be forced to take tougher action.

"I cannot and will not rule out taking further measures in the coming days," Berlin mayor Michael Mueller said Wednesday.

"The question of a lockdown can play a role. That can be decided quickly. In that case, the parks and gardens will be closed," he warned.

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Source: AFP/ec

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