BERLIN — German Chancellor Angela Merkel has urged her country’s citizens to get vaccinated against COVID-19, saying the more people who get the shot “the more free we will be again.”
Vaccination rates in Germany have slowed in recent weeks. About 58.7% of the population has received at least one shot and 43% are fully vaccinated.
Germany’s disease control agency said last week that the country should aim to vaccinate 85% of people ages 12-59 and 90% of people over 60 to prevent the delta variant causing a strong resurgence of coronavirus cases this autumn and winter.
Merkel, who has received both shots, called on Germans to get vaccinated to protect themselves and others from serious illness, and linked higher immunization rates with the further easing of pandemic restrictions.