SThe PD, Greens and FDP have spoken out against corona restrictions for travelers coming from China. In view of the massive corona wave in China, it is important to “observe the situation critically and to react if necessary,” said the SPD health expert Heike Baehrens of the “Welt” (Monday edition). “I do not think it is appropriate to restrict entry or even to ban flights at this point in time,” she emphasized, with a view to demands from the Union.
Green health expert Janosch Dahmen supported Baehrens’ position: “The idea of trying to stop the entry of the corona virus in the event of an outbreak of the dimensions we are currently seeing in China through travel restrictions or the suspension of direct flight connections to Germany is unrealistic.” He advised concentrating on effective instruments such as wearing masks indoors, testing before meetings with risk groups and the reliable implementation of proven hygiene concepts. “New, much more dangerous virus variants are unlikely, but possible,” added Dahmen.
Obligatory testing is not an effective means
The FDP health politician Christine Aschenberg-Dugnus warned against stirring up panic. “Leading virologists assume that the coronavirus wave in China will not create a new virus. Virus variants arise all over the world, but there is no evidence of a dangerous mutation.” Therefore, close observation is the appropriate reaction. “We are in an endemic phase in Germany, have a basic immunization rate of over 95 percent, effective vaccines are available.” Therefore, there is no longer any reason for state-imposed protective measures.
EU countries discuss common strategy
China is currently experiencing the highest increase in Covid infections in the world, and hospitals are overcrowded in many places. In early December, Beijing backed away from its strict zero-Covid policy in a radical about-face. Since then, the corona restrictions have been significantly relaxed.
In view of the high number of infections in China, several countries, including the USA, France, Spain and Great Britain, have ordered a corona test for travelers from the People’s Republic. Next week, the EU states want to discuss a common strategy.