Germany, France see virus surge as holidaymakers return home

Germany and France recorded their worst daily infection rates in months with concerns growing Thursday that coronavirus cases could spike in Europe just as holidaymakers return home and children go back to school, AFP reports. 

In the United States, the country's top infectious diseases official, Anthony Fauci, said the government would not make any future COVID-19 vaccine obligatory for the general public.

But he said local jurisdictions could make it mandatory for some groups, like children.

"You don't want to mandate and try and force anyone to take a vaccine. We've never done that," said Fauci, a member of the White House coronavirus task force, during a video talk Wednesday organised by George Washington University.

His comments came hours after Australia's Prime Minister Scott Morrison announced that coronavirus vaccines, once approved, would be mandatory for everyone in his country barring medical exemptions.

Germany Thursday reported 1,707 new cases of the coronavirus in the past 24 hours, the highest daily toll since the peak of the pandemic in April.

The country has fared better than many European neighbours in suppressing the virus so far but like elsewhere, the number of cases has jumped significantly over the summer holidays.

France on Wednesday recorded new coronavirus cases at the fastest daily rate since May.

Almost 3,800 COVID-19 infections were confirmed in the past 24 hours, the health ministry's DGS public health division said.


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