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But new daily infections have accelerated in recent weeks, as in much of the world.

On Friday, Chancellor urged citizens to keep up their guard against the virus.

“This is a serious matter, as serious as it’s ever been, and you need to carry on taking it seriously,” she said.

Protesters had gathered before the Brandenburg Gate in central Berlin ahead of the march with signs reading “Stop the corona lies” and “Merkel must go.”

About two hundred anti-mask activists held a rally in Paris to protest against sanitary measures with slogans such as “No to the health dictatorship” and “Let our children breathe.”

In London, several hundred demonstrators gathered in Trafalgar Square calling coronavirus a hoax and demanding an end to lockdown restrictions.

Many carried banners saying “Fake News,” or “Masks are Muzzles” and rejecting any mandatory vaccination programs.

The virus has killed more than 40,000 people in Britain (Interactive graphic tracking global spread of coronavirus: open in an external browser.)

(Reporting by Elke Ahlswede, Christian Goetz and Sabine Ehrhardt in Berlin; additional reporting by Tom Sims in Frankfurt and Yiming Woo in Paris; writing by Tom Sims; Editing by Clarence Fernandez, Helen Popper, Alexandra Hudson)

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