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German Chancellor Expresses Cautious Hope over Latest Coronavirus Data

German Chancellor Angela Merkel briefs the media about measures of the German government to avoid further spread of the coronavirus at the chancellery in Berlin, Germany, Thursday, April 9, 2020.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel said Thursday that the nation’s latest coronavirus statistics give some reason for hope but cautioned against a “false sense of security.”

Germany has confirmed 113,296 COVID-19 infections and over 2,300 deaths as of Thursday, the Johns Hopkins University reported.

At a news briefing in Berlin, Merkel said the figures indicate the increase in new cases is flattening and the current number of infections is “a bit” lower, “if we count the people who recovered and those who lost their lives.”

She said that perhaps it would not be necessary to further tighten the existing restrictions, designed to stop the spread of the virus. But, at the same time, she thinks it would be a mistake to ease them.

Germany has shut schools, bars, most shops and other facilities, and has banned gatherings of more than two people in public. Merkel said they need to keep the restrictions in place through this weekend’s Easter holiday and beyond, otherwise they risk destroying the progress they have made.

She said she will meet with her “corona cabinet” as well as regional governments next week to assess the situation.