German Chancellor Angela Merkel admitted that she made a “mistake” in her decision to tighten the closure procedures during the Easter holiday, confirming the abandonment of this project, which sparked many criticisms.
“The mistake must be recognized when it occurs, and the most important thing is to correct the mistake in a timely manner if possible,” the chancellor said in a speech at the conclusion of an emergency meeting of the leaders of the German provinces on Wednesday.
She added, “I know that this proposal raised more uncertainty, and I am very sorry for that and I ask for forgiveness from the citizens.”
She emphasized that the idea of a five-day closure during Easter was received “in good faith” with the aim of slowing and reversing the curve of the third wave of the epidemic, but it was not possible to achieve it in such a short period.
At the end of 12 hours of talks, Merkel and the provincial leaders decided, the day before yesterday, to impose these measures, which stipulate the closure of even supermarkets and the prevention of religious celebrations. They had intended to declare April 1 a holiday, but the hastily made decision raised many questions, especially about “continuing to pay employees” and arrangements within companies.
This measure faced criticism even within the German government. Interior Minister Horst Schaeffer expressed his “astonishment” that the Christian Democrats sacrificed Easter masses in order to combat the epidemic.
Professional organizations expressed their concerns about the repercussions of closing stores after months of restrictions that left major economic losses in Germany, but Merkel sent a message of hope, and said: “I am convinced that we will defeat the virus together. The road is arduous and bumpy and full of successes and failures, but the virus will gradually lose its ability.” To frighten us. ”
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