New cases in Germany accelerated this weekend just days after the federal government loosened restrictions, raising concerns that the virus will continue terrorizing the country through late spring. The virus crisis appears not to be diminishing anytime soon, as anti-quarantine demonstrations intensify in several cities in the last two weeks. People have become furious with government-enforced lockdowns, and have taken to the streets, demanding the end to quarantines and a reopening of the crashed economy.
It's not hard to figure out why demonstrators are out in the streets -- look at the economic devastation lockdowns have created across the Germany economy. To describe what happened in one word: "unprecedented."
Despite the government relaxing some restrictions last week, the Robert Koch Institute for disease control reported this weekend that the virus spread is accelerating across the country.
Hundreds, and maybe even thousands, of anti-quarantine protesters swarmed Alexanderplatz, a large public square and transport hub in the central Mitte district of Berlin, on Saturday, and other places in Berlin, which defied the government's limit of 50 people for outside social gatherings, reported Daily Mail.
And the social chaos unfolds...
On Saturday, police arrested protesters in Berlin.
Clashes between demonstrators and police were seen.
Protesters scuffled with police as hundreds gathered without permission in #Berlin's #Alexanderplatz on Saturday, to protest #coronavirus lockdown restrictions. Police used pepper spray and arrested several protesters.— Ruptly (@Ruptly) May 10, 2020
Full coverage: https://t.co/W6eOPOtA48 pic.twitter.com/zOwlOugB4y
Large crowds were seen in Berlin, lack of face masks among protesters was evident.
WATCH: Police detain several people at a protest in Berlin as thousands attend peaceful rallies, calling for the government to end restrictions on people’s movements aimed at tackling to spread of coronavirus. pic.twitter.com/Z4GBtC9WOB— NBC News (@NBCNews) May 10, 2020
More views of the chaos
Anti-quarantine protests were not limited to Berlin; thousands of others were seen in Munich, Stuttgart, and other German cities to protest the government's strict stay-at-home orders. Many folks demanded the government lift restrictions, so a return to normalcy could be seen during the summer months. Protesters accused politicians and hospital workers of spreading panic and overinflating statics that has resulted in their freedoms being infringed on. Some rallies in other cities included anti-vaccination activists.
In Munich, law enforcement used loudspeakers to tell protesters to obey social distancing rules to minimize infection risk. However, many did not comply. Police did not disperse the crowds as they were peaceful. In Stuttgart, thousands participated in demonstrations, with many complying with local rules. The same was seen in other German cities.
Angela Merkel's latest efforts to ease Germany's lockdown could be derailed with the re-acceleration in the spread of the virus. This would likely result in a prolonged shutdown and undoubtedly lead to more angry people. As the weather gets warmer, expect more people outside which could result in larger volumes of demonstrators at future rallies.