It is the “greatest test” that the European Union has faced in its history. The alert was given on Monday by German Chancellor Angela Merkel at a press conference in Berlin dedicated to the coronavirus pandemic.
The conservative leader believes that “the answer” to this crisis can only be “more Europe, a stronger Europe and a Europe that works well”.
Angela Merkel pleads in particular for Europe to become more “sovereign” in the production of sanitary masks, while the demand for these accessories to fight against the Covid-19 is at the center of a global competition without mercy.
Recalling that, to varying degrees, all countries were hit by the pandemic, the Chancellor considers that it is in the interest of all and also of Germany that Europe comes out strong from this test “
“Although this market is currently located in Asia, it is important that we learn from this pandemic that we also need a certain sovereignty, or at least a pillar to carry out our own production”, in Germany or in Europe, she defended.
Relax restrictions “in stages”
These remarks come on the eve of an important meeting of European finance ministers devoted to the economic and financial instruments to be implemented to support economies hard hit by the pandemic which is shutting down almost the entire continent. Angela Merkel came out of her quarantine last week after being in contact with a doctor carrying the virus,
Once again, the Chancellor firmly rejected at this stage any loosening of the restrictive measures introduced in the country, where Holy Week began, before Easter celebrations which traditionally translate into excursions, stays at sea or the campaign for many Germans. She also mentioned a relaxation that would only be done “in stages”.
Germany has not decreed strict containment like France or Italy, but all schools and most stores are closed. Everyone is invited to work at home when possible and gatherings of more than two people in public space are prohibited. All of these measures are in effect at least until April 19.