Coronavirus: Germany slowly eases lockdown measures

German Chancellor Angela Merkel has announced plans to slowly ease restrictions brought in to tackle the coronavirus pandemic.

Social distancing rules will stay in place until at least 3 May, with Ms Merkel also recommending the use of face masks in shops and on public transport.

But as of next week shops under a certain size could open their doors.

And schools will gradually start to reopen from 4 May.

Ms Merkel said the country had achieved “fragile intermediate success” through the strict measures.

The chancellor said the country “must keep focused and keep going”, adding that they “do not have a lot of room for manoeuvre”.

Large public gatherings including religious services will remain banned until 31 August. Bars, cafes, restaurants, cinemas and music venues will all remain closed.

According to Germany’s Robert Koch Institute (RKI), the country has 127,584 confirmed cases and has reported 3,254 deaths.

Ms Merkel’s announcement makes Germany the latest European nation to start easing restrictions

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