Authorities in Berlin are investigating what appears to have been arson earlier Sunday at the German Institute of Infectious Diseases, which led to the country’s reaction to the coronavirus pandemic.
Police say a security guard witnessed several people around 2:40 a.m. Local time throwing bottle-based igniters on the facade of the Robert Koch Institute (RKI) in Berlin’s Tempelhof district. the German television “Deutsche Welle”.
The photos showed a broken window, partially blackened by flames in the building that houses the federal government agency and research institute responsible for disease control and prevention. Police are investigating whether the attack was politically motivated, Reuters reported.
SPAIN ORDERS SECOND NATIONAL EMERGENCY STATE, CORONAVIRUS NIGHT
Hours later, about 2,000 protesters gathered in Berlin’s Alexanderplatz Square to protest new coronavirus restrictions imposed in the German capital as infection levels have risen in the country in recent days. Police say most people in the crowd ignore social distancing and do not wear masks, according to Deutsche Welle
The protest was organized to coincide with the World Health Summit, which was to take place at a congress center in Berlin, but was included online to avoid infection. German Health Minister Jens Spahn and institute members Robert Koch, who is advising the government on public health restrictions, will speak at the three-day event.
GERMAN DEMONSTRATIONS PROTEST CORONAVIRUS RESTRICTIONS, CANNOT FORM A HUMAN TRAIN AROUND A LAKE
In the last few days, Germany – which has been widely praised for effectively slowing the spread of the virus at the start of the pandemic – has seen an increase in infection.
RKI President Lothar Wheeler said on Thursday that the daily number of confirmed cases had reached 11,287, with the first 24-hour estimate in Germany being over 10,000 marks since the start of the pandemic. He said the country’s three-point strategy to “limit, protect, mitigate” to quickly track outbreaks, maintain hygiene and safety rules and effectively treat infections needs the help of society to continue to succeed.
Germany’s spring lock was much softer than in many other European countries. It has reopened schools across the country, as well as shops, restaurants and other businesses, although there have been provisions for masks, restrictions on the number of people who can gather in one place, and other precautions.
But German states have begun to apply stricter rules in recent weeks as their numbers rise again.
Click here to get the FOX NEWS app
Although most Germans backed the blocking measures earlier this year, a new economic survey published last week found consumers in the country increasingly pessimistic about the future amid growing fears of new restrictions.
Germany has seen at least 443,139 positive cases of COVID-19 and more than 10,000 deaths – making it the fifth European country with the most infections.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.