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Covid-19: in Berlin, justice cancels nighttime restrictions on bars and restaurants

This measure was taken to curb the Covid-19 pandemic, but justice has challenged it. The administrative court in Berlin (Germany) on Friday canceled the obligation imposed on bars and restaurants in the German capital to close every day between 11 p.m. and 6 a.m.

The court was seized in summary proceedings by eleven restaurateurs and operators of Berlin bars who considered disproportionate these night restrictions, imposed since October 10. This decision can be appealed to the Higher Administrative Court Berlin-Brandenburg.

The Berlin city hall had made the decision to introduce nighttime restrictions in the face of the worrying increase in Covid-19 cases in the capital. Germany again recorded this Friday a new record of 7,334 new positive cases in 24 hours.

The German government repeated this week to be very worried about the progression of contaminations in the country. During a crisis meeting Wednesday, Chancellor Angela Merkel and regional leaders drew up a national roadmap listing new restrictions, including nightly closures of bars and restaurants after a certain contamination threshold.

A city hard hit by the restrictions

Bars and restaurants therefore had to close between 11 p.m. and 6 a.m., a time slot which usually sees tens of thousands of people strolling every weekend in the capital where many places remain open all night. The restrictions, which affected all stores except pharmacies and gas stations, were to be in place at least until October 31.

Other cities, such as Frankfurt or Cologne, have taken similar measures with mandatory night shutdowns. In Berlin, it was another very hard blow for the city’s economy, already hard hit by the closure of clubs for several months. The nightlife of the German capital is an essential component of the city’s economy. The clubs alone brought the city over € 1.5 billion in 2018.

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