Germany opens detention camps for people breaking quarantine rules

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Germany opens detention camps for people breaking quarantine rules

Germany has announced plans to open COVID-specific detention camps for those who fail to conform to the quarantine regulations imposed due to the coronavirus crisis. Similar camps are currently being discussed in New York and Australia.

Due to permission granted under “emergency powers,” the detention centers, or prison camps, will be used to contain those who break quarantine rules.

People who refuse to go into self-isolation after testing positive for COVID-19, or after coming into contact with someone who has tested ‘positive,’ could be placed in the detention centers. However, reports note that those who refuse to quarantine must first be warned and then receive a fine, after which a judge may then sentence them to a detention center.

Officials from Saxony, a state in Germany that converted a refugee camp into a detention center said that the prison camps would only be used for those who had “repeatedly broken the rules around quarantine even after facing financial penalties.”

Speaking to Russia Today, one official stated, “We don’t assume that there will be very many, but in the event that a court decides that way, there will be a facility to accommodate them.”

Nor is Saxony to be the only state in the country to employ such measures, as the three states of Baden-Württemberg, Brandenburg and Schleswig-Holstein are also to use similar procedures to detain rule breakers. “In Baden-Württemberg, two hospitals will have rooms reserved for repeat offenders, which will be guarded by police. Brandenburg will use a section of a refugee centre, while Schleswig-Holstein will use an area within a juvenile detention centre.”

The draconian measures mirror those which are currently being considered in New York, where Bill A416, currently under review by the New York Assembly’s Health Committee, would permit the governor and his delegates to order the removal and/or detention” of anyone who “presents a potential danger to the health of others,” in officials’ estimation. If an individual was even a “suspected case or suspected carrier” of a disease, then he could be removed into “the custody of the department.”

Under the bill, any official with delegated authority and at least “a reasonably specific description of the individuals or group being detained” would be able to confine people by obtaining a court order.

The text of the bill is not particular to COVID-19 and could be used for any “illnesses that may pose a threat to the public health,” in the event that the governor declares “a state health emergency.”

In Australia, a country which has been marked by its extreme restrictions in response to COVID, specific camps are being discussed in which to quarantine people. Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk raised the idea of using “remote mining camps to quarantine international arrivals,” instead of using hotels. Currently, arrivals into the country are required to use “government approved mandatory quarantine for 14 days from arrival.”

“I think with this new strain, we have to put all options on the table,” Palaszczuk declared, as Australia’s Northern Territory has already paved the way by using isolated mining camps as quarantine centers. Up to 850 people will soon be held at Northern Territory’s camp, under new expansions set to take place imminently.

The state of Victoria recently passed its own COVID-19 Omnibus (Emergency Measures) Amendment Bill, which is very similar to New York’s A416 bill. The new Omnibus bill allows police and other “designated” or “authorised” officers to arrest and detain “high risk” individuals who they consider are “likely to refuse or fail to comply” with lockdown regulations. Once someone has been arrested, he could be held for an indefinite period.

 

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