25 Nov 2021, 08:53

Germany's Covid death toll passes 100,000

  FRANKFURT, Nov 25, 2021 (BSS/AFP) - More than 100,000 people have died of
Covid-19 in Germany since the start of the pandemic, a public health agency
announced Thursday.

  Europe's largest economy is battling a fresh surge in coronavirus cases,
and recorded 351 fatalities in the past 24 hours, bringing the total death
toll to 100,119, according to figures from the Robert Koch Institute.

  As infections reach a record high and intensive care units fill up, the
health crisis is posing an immediate challenge to the new coalition
government set to take over from Angela Merkel's cabinet.

  Some hospitals are already facing an "acute overload" that has made it
necessary to transfer Covid patients abroad, said Gernot Marx, head of the
German Interdisciplinary Association for Intensive Care and Emergency

  Germany last week announced tougher Covid curbs, including requiring people
to prove they are vaccinated, cured or have recently tested negative for the
virus before they can travel on public transport or go into the workplace.

  Several of the worst-hit areas have gone further and ordered new shutdowns.

  The spike has ignited a fierce debate in Germany about whether to follow
Austria's example and make vaccination mandatory for all citizens.

  Incoming chancellor Olaf Scholz has voiced support for mandatory jabs and
said his new government will invest one billion euros in bonuses for
healthcare workers on the frontlines of the pandemic.

  Germany's fourth virus wave has in part been blamed on its relatively low
vaccination rate of about 69 percent, compared to other European countries
such as France, where it is 75 percent.

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