Madrid mayor decries partying Spaniards as Covid lockdown ends | Coronavirus


The mayor of Madrid has appealed for folks to behave responsibly after hundreds of individuals greeted the tip of Spain’s six-month state of emergency by taking to the streets of cities and cities throughout the nation in spontaneous celebration.

On the finish of October final yr, the socialist-led coalition authorities of the Spanish prime minister, Pedro Sánchez, declared a state of emergency that included a nationwide in a single day curfew, restrictions on travelling between areas and a ban on gatherings of greater than six folks.

Because the clock struck midnight on Saturday and the state of emergency ended, fireworks have been let off in Madrid and folks congregated in Puerta del Sol, the central sq. the place revellers historically collect to see within the new yr. There have been related impromptu celebrations in Barcelona and elsewhere.

The mayor of Madrid, José Luis Martínez-Almeida, referred to as for folks to recollect the foundations after scenes of consuming, jubilation and sometimes maskless celebrations unfold throughout the web.

“Freedom doesn’t contain having consuming events on the street as a result of these consuming events aren’t allowed within the metropolis of Madrid,” he stated on Sunday. “Every one among us wants to know that we stay in a society … and {that a} street-drinking get together in Madrid isn’t freedom.”

Alleyways within the Born district of Barcelona have been filled with revellers late on Saturday night time. {Photograph}: Nacho Doce/Reuters

Spain is battling a fourth wave of the pandemic, which has up to now contaminated 3,567,408 folks and claimed virtually 79,000 lives. Nonetheless, the vaccination effort is selecting up pace. To this point, greater than 13.2 million folks of Spain’s 47 million inhabitants have obtained a shot, and virtually 6 million have had each doses of vaccine.

The central authorities has determined towards extending the emergency powers, as an alternative permitting regional authorities to determine which measures are essential to struggle and include the virus. Journey between areas is as soon as once more permitted, that means folks can go on vacation or go to buddies and family elsewhere in Spain. Facemasks stay compulsory for all, besides for kids underneath six, folks with well being exemptions and people exercising or swimming in swimming pools, the ocean, rivers, reservoirs or lakes – as lengthy as social distancing may be maintained.

Sánchez has additionally appealed for a shared sense of duty to assist negotiate the pandemic and its aftermath.

“The pandemic has as soon as once more proven us the worth of unity,” he said in a tweet on Sunday morning. “Our shared motion has been key within the face of the virus and can proceed to be so as we start the restoration.”

Barcelona police moved to contain crowds that had gathered to drink and celebrate.
Barcelona police moved to include crowds that had gathered to drink and rejoice. {Photograph}: Nacho Doce/Reuters

Fernando Simón, the top of Spain’s centre for well being emergencies, has warned folks to not decrease their guard regardless of the tip of the state of emergency.

“The tip of the state of emergency doesn’t imply the tip of management measures,” he said earlier this week. “Particular person measures must proceed to be utilized and regional authorities will preserve making use of quite a lot of measures that may enable them to manage transmission.”

Whereas Simón stated Spain’s regional governments had the required instruments at their disposal, he added: “We will’t rule something out on the subject of the evolution of the pandemic.”

The regional authorities of Madrid – whose president, Isabel Díaz Ayuso, has been a vociferous critic of the Sánchez administration’s lockdown measures – determined towards imposing a brand new in a single day curfew. It has additionally dominated out fining folks for assembly in teams of greater than six, although it has suggested towards family mixing.

Ayuso’ conservative authorities introduced on Friday that bars and eating places could be allowed to stay open for an additional hour – till midnight – and that retailers could be allowed to remain open till 11pm.

Nonetheless, even though the variety of Covid instances per 100,000 folks within the area is 317.6 towards a nationwide common of 198.6 – and the truth that 42% of Madrid’s intensive care unit beds are occupied by coronavirus sufferers in contrast with 21% throughout the remainder of Spain – teams of individuals won’t be fined for gathering in non-public locations and mixing with different households.

“The [regional] well being division recommends that gatherings of individuals in public locations for household, social or leisure actions be restricted to 6 folks except they stay collectively,” it stated in a press release. “Equally, we advise that gatherings of individuals for household, social or leisure actions at house or in non-public areas be restricted to folks in the identical household or family.”

The announcement got here three days after Ayuso gained a snap election underneath the marketing campaign slogan of libertad (freedom).

Newest Information As we speak


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here