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US General Meets German Officials Over Resort Outbreak

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BERLIN (AP) The general commanding US troops in Bavaria met with local officials in the Alpine town of Garmisch-Partenkirchen on Wednesday to reassure them of the US military’s commitment to prevent the spread of COVID-19, after an epidemic in a hotel of troops sickened dozens of them.

A total of 59 people in the city, including 25 staff at the Edelweiss Lodge and Resort run by the US military, have tested positive for the novel coronavirus after a 26-year-old American working at the hotel allegedly violated quarantine rules while visiting several bars last week.

German authorities said on Wednesday that further testing had revealed no additional cases, although they encouraged anyone who visited the affected bars and had not yet been tested to come forward.

While there is still a lot of work to be done, we are encouraged by the results returned from yesterday’s and today’s tests, Brig. General Christopher Norrie said in a statement after his visit.

Norrie noted that after learning of the outbreak on Friday, the US military had deployed four helicopters to Garmisch-Partenkirchen carrying additional medical personnel and test kits.

Employees who had close contact with positive staff members were placed in quarantine and the hotel was closed for two weeks, he added.

We are extremely grateful for Bavarias’ proactive response to protect our communities as much as possible from this virus, Norrie said. We are part of this effort, alongside our Bavarian hosts and friends, to act responsibly to limit the potential spread of COVID-19.

Norrie said his command, which includes around 51,000 soldiers, civilian employees and family members at seven locations in Bavaria, would ensure that community members who do not obey orders, including local ordinances, would be required to accountable.

US military personnel, including civilians and their families, are prohibited from visiting establishments that function exclusively as bars and nightclubs, he said.

We know that nearby, crowded and confined environments are conducive to the spread of the virus, Norrie said.

He added that while it may not be possible to know how the virus entered the community, we all bear individual and collective responsibility to limit the spread of COVID-19, and I have no doubts that our community as a whole will continue to contribute positively to this. fight.

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