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German parliament to discuss row over substandard face masks


A row between the parties that made up Germany’s governing coalition about the use of substandard face masks would be discussed in parliament today.

Lawmakers would look at accusations made against Health Minister Jens Spahn, who was from Angela Merkel’s party, the Christian Democrats (CDU).

It’s claimed that the Health Ministry earmarked masks, which were ordered from China and were not tested according to high standards, for people with disabilities or for the homeless.

The plan was abandoned after Labour Ministry which was headed by the Social Democrats (SPD), also in the coalition intervened.

The SPD and opposition parties criticised Spahn after news magazine Der Spiegel reported that the government had been looking for a use for uncertified face masks left over from orders placed during the first wave of infections in 2020.

Spahn was forced to stand his ground on the issue on Monday, but also pointed the finger at the Labour Ministry, led by Hubertus Heil.

Spahn said earlier this week that the masks had been checked for their ability to protect from infection but he conceded that they had not received EU approval.

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