Author Posts
World

Why Is Europe Keeping Its Schools Open, Despite New Lockdowns?

BERLIN — When Chancellor Angela Merkel announced the latest round of restrictions on public life, she named bars, restaurants, theaters, concert halls, gyms and tattoo parlors as institutions that would be forced to close. But missing from the list released on Wednesday were schools and day care centers — among the first to be shuttered in the spring lockdown.In France, President Emmanuel Macron also said on Wednesday that schools would be exempt from wide-reaching nationwide restrictions that are to take effect beginning Friday. Ireland also allowed schools to remain open despite a nationwide lockdown that went into effect earlier this month.Not everyone is happy with the decisions, but policymakers are taking extra precautions to reduce the risk in schools, from mask requirements for ...

Read More
World

Schools Stay Open in Europe’s New Lockdowns, a Reversal From Spring

BERLIN — When Chancellor Angela Merkel announced the latest round of restrictions on public life, she named bars, restaurants, theaters, concert halls, gyms and tattoo parlors as institutions that would be forced to close. But missing from the list released on Wednesday were schools and day care centers — among the first to be shuttered in the spring lockdown.In France, President Emmanuel Macron also said on Wednesday that schools would be exempt from wide-reaching nationwide restrictions that are to take effect beginning Friday. Ireland also allowed schools to remain open despite a nationwide lockdown that went into effect earlier this month.Not everyone is happy with the decisions, but policymakers are taking extra precautions to reduce the risk in schools, from mask requirements for ...

Read More
World

Aleksei Navalny Out of a Coma and Responsive, German Doctors Say

BERLIN — The Russian opposition leader Aleksei A. Navalny is no longer in a medically induced coma and is responsive, doctors treating him at Charité hospital in Berlin said on Monday. But they did not rule out lasting damage from what they called his “severe poisoning” with a military-grade nerve agent.Mr. Navalny was flown on Aug. 22 to Germany for treatment of a suspected poisoning that specialists from the German Army later determined came from the Novichok family of substances developed by the Soviet Union and used at least once before on an opponent of the Kremlin.Ties between Berlin and Moscow, already strained over Russia’s 2014 invasion of Crimea and suspected involvement in the slaying of a Chechen rebel commander in a Berlin park last year, have been further eroded by the poi...

Read More
World

Aleksei Navalny Was Poisoned With Novichok, Germany Says

BERLIN — The German government said on Wednesday that the Russian opposition leader Aleksei A. Navalny, who is being treated in Germany, had been poisoned with the nerve agent Novichok, and demanded an explanation from Moscow.Novichok is the same nerve agent that was used to poison Sergei V. Skripal, a former Soviet spy, and his daughter in a 2018 attack in Britain that Western nations have attributed to Russia.Toxicology tests carried out by a German Army laboratory revealed the “doubtless presence of a chemical nerve agent of the Novichok group” in the system of Mr. Navalny, who was flown to Germany on Aug. 22 after he collapsed while on a flight from Siberia to Moscow.“The German government condemns this attack in the strongest possible terms,” Steffen Seibert, a spokesman for Chance...

Read More
World

‘He Did What?’: On Trump, Merkel’s Face Does the Talking

BERLIN — Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany refuses as a rule to comment on the internal affairs of other countries or pass judgment on their leaders. The president of the United States is no exception.But that hasn’t stopped her letting her face from doing the talking, reflecting confusion, befuddlement or exasperation regarding President Trump as the situation required. On Friday, she was at it again.Asked during her annual summer news conference about a claim made by Richard Grenell, the former U.S. ambassador to Germany, that he had “watched President Trump charm the chancellor of Germany,” Ms. Merkel drew her eyebrows together, tilted her head and leaned toward the reporter.“He did what?” she asked.“Charmed,” repeated Marina Kormbaki, a journalist with the German reporting collect...

Read More
World

‘He Did What?’: On Trump, Merkel’s Face Does the Talking

BERLIN — Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany refuses as a rule to comment on the internal affairs of other countries or pass judgment on their leaders. The president of the United States is no exception.But that hasn’t stopped her letting her face from doing the talking, reflecting confusion, befuddlement or exasperation regarding President Trump as the situation required. On Friday, she was at it again.Asked during her annual summer news conference about a claim made by Richard Grenell, the former U.S. ambassador to Germany, that he had “watched President Trump charm the chancellor of Germany,” Ms. Merkel drew her eyebrows together, tilted her head and leaned toward the reporter.“He did what?” she asked.“Charmed,” repeated Marina Kormbaki, a journalist with the German reporting collect...

Read More
World

Tests Suggest Aleksei Navalny Was Poisoned, German Doctors Say

BERLIN — Tests on Aleksei A. Navalny, the prominent Russian dissident who fell ill while on a flight to Moscow last week, have revealed indications of poisoning but his life is not in danger, the hospital where he was being treated said in a statement on Monday.“The clinical findings indicate intoxication by a substance from the group of cholinesterase inhibitors,” the doctors at Charité hospital said. “The specific substance has not been identified so far, and a further wide-ranging analysis has been initiated.”The effect of the toxin “has been proven several times and in independent laboratories,” the statement said.Mr. Navalny remained in an induced coma in stable condition, but his life was not in danger, according to the statement. The doctors said that although it was too early to...

Read More
World

Navalny, Putin Critic With Suspected Poisoning, Arrives in Germany

BERLIN — Russia’s most prominent opposition figure, Aleksei A. Navalny, arrived in Berlin for treatment on Saturday, more than 48 hours after falling into a coma in Siberia in what his family and supporters suspect was a deliberate poisoning.Mr. Navalny was admitted to Charité, one of Germany’s leading medical research facilities, where he will undergo “extensive diagnostic tests” the hospital said in a statement hours after the plane transporting him touched down.“Patient stable, mission accomplished,” said Jaka Bizilj, who runs the foundation that had organized the air transport at the urging of Mr. Navalny’s friends and family.Mr. Navalny, who remained in a coma after falling ill on a flight within Russia on Thursday, was in stable condition throughout his Saturday-morning journey fr...

Read More
World

Welcome Back to Germany. Now Take Your Free Virus Test.

BERLIN — When she returned to Germany last week from a vacation in Serbia, one of the first things Snjezana Kirstein did was to stop at a pop-up coronavirus testing center at Berlin’s Tegel Aiport.Whereas such tests can be hard to find in the United States, with unpredictable costs and results two weeks in coming, Ms. Kirstein was on her way in a matter of minutes after having her nose and throat swabbed. She expected an answer in 24 to 48 hours. The test was not only swift, it was free.“I think it is super,” Ms. Kirstein said. “It was so easy to find, and best of all, it didn’t cost me a thing.”This week, Germany began requiring that same simple test for all citizens or residents, like Ms. Kirstein, and other travelers who enter the country from coronavirus “hot spots,” again making it...

Read More