Politics

Söder: Controls in Tyrol as long as necessary

Borders remain tight. Söder sees the risk of the spread of coronavirus mutants from Tyrol as “particularly high”.

The Bavarian Prime Minister Markus Söder (CSU) wants to continue the controls at the borders with Austria and the Czech Republic “as long as necessary”.

The risk of the spread of coronavirus mutants from the Czech Republic and the Austrian state of Tyrol is “particularly high,” said Söder. He again rejected the EU Commission’s criticism of the border controls.

“If the Commission wants to do something for the region, we would be happy to receive additional doses of vaccine from Brussels,” said Söder. In the Bavarian border areas, a special strategy is used in which “all available means” are used against the coronavirus, including rapid tests and additional vaccination doses.

The stricter border controls were introduced in mid-February after the Robert Koch Institute (RKI) classified the Czech Republic, Slovakia and most of Tyrol as areas in which the new and particularly contagious forms of the coronavirus are spreading.

However, the EU Commission criticizes the border controls as disproportionate. The protection of the German population could also be achieved through “less restrictive measures”, it said on Monday in a letter from the Commission to the German EU ambassador in Brussels.

Despite the criticism, the Interior Ministry extended border controls until March 3 this week. Only Germans and foreigners with a residence and residence permit in Germany are allowed to enter from the affected areas. There are exceptions for commuters and the movement of goods.

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