Nations Praised for Their Virus Policies Run Into Problems

Germany and South Korea have to clamp down
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted May 9, 2020 12:30 PM CDT
2 Countries With 'Great' Virus Policies Run Into Problems
An elderly woman with a face mask to protect from the coronavirus buys flowers at a market in Aachen, Germany, Thursday, April 9, 2020.   (AP Photo/Martin Meissner)

South Korea's capital closed down more than 2,100 bars and other nightspots Saturday because of a new cluster of coronavirus infections, and Germany scrambled to contain fresh outbreaks at slaughterhouses, underscoring the dangers authorities face as they try to reopen their economies, the AP reports. Germany and South Korea have both carried out extensive testing and contact tracing and have been hailed for avoiding the mass deaths that have overwhelmed other countries. But in South Korea, where a decline in new cases had prompted the government to loosen up, Seoul shut down thousands of nightclubs, hostess bars, and discos after dozens of infections were linked to clubgoers who went out last weekend as the country relaxed its social-distancing guidelines.

Many of the infections were linked to a 29-year-old man who visited three nightclubs before testing positive. Health officials in Germany faced outbreaks at three slaughterhouses in what was seen as a test of the government’s strategy for dealing with any resurgence of the virus as restrictions are eased. German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas said Europe must acknowledge that it "wasn't well-prepared" for the outbreak. Worldwide, the virus is confirmed to have infected over 3.9 million people and killed more than 275,000, according to a tally by Johns Hopkins University based on data reported by governments. Click for more. (Or see why America's "virus hero" has come under scrutiny.)

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