The delta variant means that in some countries the governments want to take firm action again. The increasing pressure to get vaccinated is driving people onto the streets in many places.
Paris/Rome/Athens (dpa) – Thousands of people demonstrated in several European countries against stricter corona measures and against backlogs for unvaccinated people.
In France, more than 160,000 people took to the streets across the country on Saturday, reports French news channel Franceinfo. There were riots and arrests both there and at a demonstration of anti-vaccination activists in Athens. In Rome, 3,000 people have protested against the EU’s digital Corona certificate, among others, and demonstrations have also been featured in media reports in other Italian cities.
In all three countries, governments have recently tightened corona measures again, given the increasing number of infections. Mandatory vaccination for health workers has been introduced in France, one has already been announced in Greece.
In addition, governments in Italy and France plan to link access to many sites with evidence of a corona vaccination, a negative test result or recovery. In France, for example, such proof could soon become mandatory for long-distance trains and shopping centers, in Italy, corresponding evidence must be submitted from 6 August, for example for visits to the interior areas of restaurants and fitness studios.
A week ago, about 114,000 people across the country protested the government’s plans in France. On Friday, the members of the National Assembly, as the House of Representatives, then gave their first reading approval to the planned mandatory vaccination for health workers.
There are currently no corona vaccination requirements in Germany. Prime Minister Winfried Kretschmann of Baden-Württemberg did not completely rule out such an arrangement on Sunday. “It is possible that variants will emerge that make this necessary,” said the Green politician of the German news agency. Chancellery Minister Helge Braun (CDU) promised in the Bild am Sonntag that those who had been vaccinated would have “definitely more freedom” than those who had not been vaccinated.
Protests against corona measures took place in Sydney on Saturday with thousands of participants. Due to the spread of the more contagious delta variant of the coronavirus, a strict lockdown has been in place for a good month. Similar rallies have been reported from Brisbane and Melbourne.