The latest corona stats for Berlin (tallied Tuesday, 23 March)
Berliners vaccinated with one vaccine dose: 9.4 per cent (9.4 per cent Monday)
New cases in one day: +751 (+545 Monday)
Total number of corona deaths: 3,011 (+13 over Monday)
🟢 R number: 0.97 (1.06 Monday)
🔴 New infections per week: 102.3/100,000 inhabitants (98.6 Monday)
🟡 Share of Berlin ICUs occupied by Covid-19 patients: 16.6 per cent (15.8 per cent Monday)
The lowdown ...
Is next Thursday a holiday? No one knows.
The way German media writes it, you'd think everyone knows what "Gründonnerstag" is but the translation as "Maundy Thursday" isn't helping. For normal humans it's next Thursday, 1 April, and politicans Monday declared it a day of rest in an attempt to link it to other Christian holidays next week and create five days where life would screech to a halt and stop the third wave. But no one knows if 1 April is a bank holiday - some pols say that would require formal legislation while others say it would expose Berlin to demands for damages, making it impossible to declare an official day off. Just another example that not only is the German government's corona strategy stumbling, so is the government.
Emergency meeting about the emergency meeting
Chancellor Angela Merkel has called a surprise meeting with the heads of Germany's 16 states for today at 11am amid growing criticism at the mediocre results of a marathon Monday meeting (see above). Expect clarification on Maudy Thursday but little else.
Vaccinations bearing fruit
Divi, an assocation of German intensive care doctors, says vaccinations are already having a noticeable impact. The country's intensive care units (ICUs) now have "very few" corona patients over 80, Divi head Gernot Markx said in Deutschlandfunk. "Once we vaccinate people over 65 we'll really see the effects," he said. Imagine if everyone were vaccinated.
In case you missed it ....
One of our best-read stories this year was about how Berlin is to become a hub for night trains. Probably a lot of daydreaming about post-corona life.
Don't miss an article: sign up to Ze Newsletter!
That's all for now, folks. Stay safe!
The Berliner Zeitung English team