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GERMANY (Reuters) – German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s conservative Christian Democratic Union (CDU) has urged people to get vaccinated, after a coronaviruses coronavillosis (COVID-19) outbreak spread to at least 16,000 people in several western German cities on Sunday, prompting calls for a national lockdown and tighter border controls.

A spokesman for Merkel’s CDU, Christian Lindner, said she was “extremely worried” by the outbreak and urged people not to travel to places where the virus is circulating.

“There is no doubt that the risk to the German population is very high,” Lindner told a news conference in Berlin.

“The COVID-16 outbreak is worrying, but it does not reflect the reality of the global situation,” he added.

On Sunday, more than 100 people in Germany and the Netherlands tested positive for COVID.

Germany has so far recorded 2,717 cases of the virus, the most in Europe and more than double the number of cases recorded in the United States, where there are more than 8,000 cases.

“I’m very worried,” Merkel said in Berlin, referring to the rising number of infections.

“My colleagues in the government have already told me we should make sure that we have a plan to deal with COVID and we must have all our resources mobilized,” she said.

“We must take action to protect our borders and our citizens.”

Lindner said Merkel had asked the German Federal Ministry for the Interior and Interior Minister Peter Altmaier to prepare a strategy to address the outbreak, which had caused a surge in COVID cases in some European countries.

“It’s very important to show the government that the government is doing everything possible,” he said.

The Bundestag, the upper house of parliament, has also called for tighter border control to prevent people from entering Germany illegally.

German Chancellor Angela Trumpetern has said the outbreak is the “worst we’ve seen in the history of our country”.

The head of the German state for internal security, Alexander Gauland, told a meeting of the Christian Social Union (CSU) party in the state of Saxony on Sunday that the state was “not in the mood to wait for an international conference to come up with a solution” and was preparing to send in the troops.

“Our state government is not in the position to wait until international conferences are called,” Gauland said.

In a joint statement, the CSU and the CDU called on the German government to implement measures to stop people from getting infected and to make it easier to get the vaccine.

“A national lockdown should be imposed to prevent all people from traveling, including people with personal connections,” they said.

Germany is home to more than 4 million people who are at high risk of contracting COVID, which can cause high fever and high cholesterol, and can be life-threatening.

(Reporting by Andrea Shalal; Writing by Nick Tattersall; Editing by Daniel Wallis)