Hundreds of Germans protest in opposition to Merkel’s coronavirus plans | Germany

One protester wore a face mask with the words “Merkel-Schnauze” on, others held banners with slogans such as “Carnival against fascism”.

Several thousand people who beat pots and pipes in the center of Berlin on Wednesday protested against Angela Merkel’s plans to give her government powers to enforce restrictions to curb the spread of the novel corona virus.

Germany’s lower and upper houses of parliament are due to pass laws later on Wednesday that could allow the government to impose restrictions on social contact, rules on wearing masks, drinking alcohol in public, closing and stopping shops Impose sporting events.

Although most Germans are accepting the latest “lockdown light” to fight a second wave of the coronavirus, critics say the law gives too much power to the government and jeopardizes the civil rights of citizens without parliamentary approval.

The far-right Alternative for Germany (AfD) has even compared them to the Enabling Act of 1933, which paved the way for Hitler’s Nazi dictatorship.

One protester wore a face mask with the inscription “Merkel-Schnauze”, others held banners with slogans such as: “For clarification. Peace and freedom. “

Protesters take part in a protest against the government’s restrictions on coronavirus disease (COVID-19) near the Brandenburg Gate in Berlin [Fabrizio Bensch/Reuters]The demonstrators neither wore masks nor were they socially distant. Policemen in hard hats lined up to prevent demonstrators from getting too close to the parliament building.

Police are desperate to avoid a recurrence of an incident in August, when protesters stormed the steps of the Reichstag parliament building during mass marches against coronavirus restrictions, some of them waving the far-right Reich flag.

The pictures went around the world and were condemned by leading German politicians.

A protester wears a face mask that reads “Merkel’s snout”. [Fabrizio Bensch/Reuters]Germany, Europe’s largest economy, has been widely praised for keeping infection and mortality rates below those of many of its neighbors during the first phase of the crisis, but like the rest of Europe, it is in the middle of a second wave.

The number of coronavirus cases rose by 17,561 to 833,307, data from the Robert Koch Institute showed on Wednesday. The death toll stands at 13,119.

Police officers hold a demonstrator while another demonstrator, who stands behind them, holds a sign that reads “The Basic Law is dead”. [Fabrizio Bensch/Reuters]

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