New 1-boyfriend rule? Chancellery examines new contact regulations

Chancellor Angela Merkel (CDU) comes to the plenary session in the German Bundestag.

picture alliance / dpa | Bernd von Jutrczenka

The fear of the spread of dangerous coronavirus mutations is apparently driving the Chancellery to significantly tighten the corona rules.

According to information from, the federal and state governments should, at the request of Chancellor Angela Merkel (CDU), bring forward their planned consultation on extending the lockdown on January 25th by one week. Since the heads of the Senate and State Chancelleries wanted to talk about the existing corona measures on Monday anyway, the summit will probably take place on Tuesday.

From government circles it is said that Merkel wants to introduce significantly stricter corona rules with the countries out of concern about the spread of the corona mutations. In conversation here: In the future, only meetings with a permanent person outside of one’s own household should be allowed for an indefinite period of time. So far, there has been a 1-friend rule, according to which you can only meet one person privately and publicly. But that is possible with friends from different households. The 1-friend rule could then become the 1-friend rule.

Hard night curfew?

However, it is unclear how this could be implemented in practice. “That’s nonsense,” they say from the countries. According to’s research, Merkel wanted to tighten the rule before the last round of prime ministers, although initially no meetings with people from other households were planned. That failed because of the resistance of the countries.

It could now be put back on the agenda and a corresponding compromise reached. The Chancellery is determined to tighten the rules significantly, they say. According to reports, Merkel also has a tough night curfew in mind. So far, some federal states allow numerous exceptions. From country circles it is said that the current situation does not justify this.

An FFP2 mask requirement, for example for shopping, as it applies in Bavaria, is, however, capable of consensus, provided that enough masks are available at all.

Possible: Mandatory home office through the back door

Furthermore, an extensive cessation of rail and air traffic is also under discussion. The number of passengers is already manageable, as many trips are not allowed. From country circles it is therefore said that one could support a corresponding tightening. Merkel denied reports that local public transport could also be paralyzed on Thursday evening in a presidium meeting of the CDU.

With the reduction in buses and trains, home office would be compulsory through the back door. Because companies would be forced to offer more home offices. The federal government had examined the arrangement of a home office requirement. According to government circles, a corresponding general arrangement cannot be implemented under labor law. At most, this is feasible through infection protection law. A request from as to whether the Ministry of Health is investigating a corresponding possibility has not yet been answered by the press office.


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