More lockdowns in Europe
By ECCT staff writers
Following Italy’s move to lock down the whole country in an effort to contain the spread of Covid-19, over the weekend the German government joined a host of other countries in announcing that it will shut its borders with Austria, Switzerland, France, Luxembourg and Denmark. The measure was implemented starting at 8am on today.
The move by Berlin followed similar border closures by Denmark, Poland and the Czech Republic while the Baltic states of Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia all closed their borders on Saturday.
This is in addition to a slew of measures already announced to cancel large events and gatherings and shut down all but essential public and business operations all across Europe and abroad.
While German officials have justified the move, it was criticised by Ursula von der Leyen, president of the European Commission, who warned on Friday that the World Health Organisation did not consider travel bans to be effective and that sealing borders had a “strong social and economic impact” and would “disrupt people’s lives and business across the borders”.