According to the Robert Koch Institute (RKI), 183.271 people have tested to be infected with the Covid 19 virus during the corona pandemic in Germany (as of 5 June 2020).
Free and independent media have a central and vital role to play in a democracy. The press, radio and television provide citizens with information independently of the state and political parties, and thereby help shape public opinion. In Germany, this role is enshrined in the country’s Basic Law. However, provocative terms such as “lying press” and “fake news” are being used increasingly often in populist propaganda to denounce quality media – around the world, and also in Germany. In many cases, social media are the platform on which people post what are frequently one-sided and extreme views of facts that do not reflect their opinions.
Germany will assume the Presidency of the Council of the European Union from Croatia on 1 July. For the following six months Germany will hold the chair in the Council of the European Union and chair all Council meetings – that amounts to roughly 1,500 sittings of almost 200 workgroups and committees in addition to the meetings of ministers.
At the end of May, the federal and state governments decided to extend the contact restrictions to contain the coronavirus pandemic until at least 29 June: contact with as few people as possible and a minimum distance of 1.5 metres from other people. Mouth and nose protection is mandatory when shopping and in public transport. As to the relaxation of various coronavirus rules, the federal government leaves its design up to the 16 federal states. For example, while bars are still closed in Bavaria, they can reopen in Saxony. Since not all regions in Germany are affected similarly by the virus, the idea is that the states should be able to respond swiftly to the respective local situation.
Wolf on a meadow in Saxony: a large number of free-roaming wolves have been living in Germany in the last few years, particularly in eastern states; in the country as a whole, according to current surveys, there are 105 confirmed packs, 25 pairs and 13 individual animals. Once extinct, the wolf is now a strictly protected animal species under the Federal Nature Conservation Act.
The symptoms of COVID-19 vary considerably. That makes it difficult for people to judge whether they are infected or not. Doctors cannot easily diagnose the disease either – they need to carry out tests to be sure. Researchers will have to understand the virus extremely well to be able to develop a vaccine. They will need as much information as possible for that, and this data has to be up-to-date, easily accessible and protected well enough to prevent misuse of patient details.