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German regional leader admits to ‘big blunder’ in virus border tests

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German regional leader admits to 'big blunder' in virus border tests
Nicolas Armer/DPA

The premier of Germany’s southern state of Bavaria admitted to a “big blunder” on Thursday after it emerged that tens of thousands of people did not receive the results of their coronavirus test after returning to the country from abroad.

“A blunder happened, and a very big blunder at that,” Soeder told reporters in Munich, the Bavarian capital, alongside state health minister Melanie Huml.

Soeder said Huml had twice offered to resign over the scandal, but he said, “I continue to trust in her.”

On Wednesday, it emerged that 44,000 thousand people had not received the results of coronavirus testing carried out on Bavarian motorways at the German border.

Around 1,000 were found to be positive, Huml said on Thursday, revising up a previous estimate of 900, and fuelling concerns that those individuals could have gone on to spread the virus in their communities.

The minister said 908 people whose test came back positive had been identified and would be informed in the coming hours.

The testing mishap comes as the daily rise in cases nationwide jumps to a level not seen since early May.

On Thursday, the Robert Koch Institute for disease control reported 1,445 additional infections, bringing Germany’s total confirmed caseload so far to 219,964.

At the peak of the outbreak in early April, the daily rise in cases reached over 6,000.


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