Coronavirus vaccines for 12 year olds 'under review' says Harden
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A police investigation found thousands of people in Friesland, in northern Germany, may have missed a COVID-19 jab in the early spring. Authorities are contacting those who may have been affected, urging them to come forward for another vaccine dose.
Most of those vaccinated in Germany during March and April were elderly, or otherwise clinically vulnerable, making them particularly at risk to coronavirus.
Speaking to a news conference Peter Beer, a police investigator, said there is “a reasonable suspicion of danger”.
German broadcaster NDR reports the investigation has been handed to a special unit, which focuses on politically motivated offences.
Police said the Red Cross nurse, who has not been named, had shared anti-vaxxer content on social media.
However, they are keeping an open mind about the motive.
Sven Ambrosy, a local councillor, said he was “totally shocked by this episode”.
He added: “The district of Friesland will do everything possible to ensure that the affected people receive their vaccination protection as soon as possible.”
Separately, Angela Merkel has announced the German state will no longer pay for free Covid tests for the unvaccinated beyond October 11.
Germans are required to have been vaccinated, tested negative or have anti-bodies after recovering from coronavirus to enter many restaurants, sporting events and religious ceremonies.
Critics argue this is a way of compelling coronavirus vaccines, via the back door.
Alice Weidel, a leader from the far-right AfD, accused Ms Merkel of “threatening to split society”.
Wolfgang Kubicki, deputy leader of the liberal FDP, said the German government is treating “responsible citizens” as “a risk factor who must if necessary be forced to do what’s good for them”.
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He added: “The government is quite clearly dismissing the idea of aligning its measures with the interests of the public good, and instead is saying explicitly that citizens need to be protected from themselves.”
Around 55 percent of the German population is fully vaccinated, with 62.5 percent having received at least one jab.
This is lower than in the UK, where the figures are 59 percent and 70 percent respectively.
The German government had hoped to fully vaccinate 85 percent of its population by the end of summer.
On Tuesday Ms Merkel met with leaders from Germany’s 16 states.
They reserved the right to introduce tougher coronavirus measures, if the virus continues to spread.
Over the past three weeks the number of cases per 100,000, recorded over a week-long period, has more than doubled.
There are fears this could lead to the reimposition of some lockdown restraints.
Germans go to the polls in six weeks in national federal elections.
Ms Merkel has already announced she won’t serve another term as chancellor, with potential successors jockeying to succeed her.
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