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Poll: Half of Germans back ban on religious services over Christmas

© Robert Michael/dpa-Zentralbild/dpa

Half of Germans are in favour of a ban on public Christmas religious services because of high coronavirus infection numbers, according to a YouGov survey commissioned by dpa.

Of the 2,042 respondents, 50 per cent said they would support a ban on in-person church services, while 35 per cent are in favour of them going ahead. 15 per cent did not give an answer.

German federal and state authorities decided against a ban on church services during the current shutdown.

However, places of worship must adhere to strict rules including mask-wearing, physical distancing and a ban on singing. The biggest Christian churches have reacted to the restrictions with understanding.

Among Catholics and Protestants polled, 47 per cent are in favour of a ban on services, with only 38 and 39 per cent respectively opposed.

Among members of non-Christian religions, 42 per cent backed a ban, while 40 per cent were against.

Non-religious respondents 58 per cent were in favour and 30 per cent against.

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The willingness to attend religious services over Christmas is generally low, the poll indicates.

Only 6 per cent of respondents said they would want to attend during the holidays, while 87 per cent said they did not plan to go and 6 per cent gave no answer.

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