Spanish government president Pedro Sánchez announced on Friday that he would enact a state of alarm in Spain for at least 15 days – a measure that was taken only once in democracy in the country, during the 2010 air traffic controllers strike. The extraordinary Council of Ministers (the third this week) is physically meeting, with the exception of the two infected ministers, to define new measures. On the table may be the border closure.
With 132 dead and more than 5,500 infected, Spain is the second European country most affected by the new coronavirus, just behind Italy. Most likely, the situation will worsen over the next few days. O La Vanguardia even writes that “in a few days” if the 10,000 confirmed cases will be reached.
One of the most affected areas is precisely the capital of Madrid, where there are already more than 2,600 cases and 86 people have died. The Mayor of Madrid, José Luis Martínez-Almeida, has already declared in an interview with El País, published this Saturday, that "the closure of Madrid is closer than we think", with regard to "mobility restrictions", as was adopted in Italy.
It will depend on whether the evolution of the peak of contagions for the next three or four days remains within the forecasts or whether, on the contrary, we are witnessing an above average scenario ”, adds the mayor.
If the reality exceeds the forecasts, Martínez-Almeida has no doubts: “It would be necessary to adopt these measures that restrict mobility. And nobody can say that it will or will not happen, at this moment. ”
The regional government of Catalonia is also very frightened. This Friday, the president of the Generalitat, Quim Torra, launched an appeal to Sánchez so that it closes the borders, something that can only be decided at national level: “The evolution of contagion requires us to be more drastic. We think that we have to anticipate an excessively rapid evolution of the disease in our country and that is why we think that it will be necessary to confine Catalonia. ”
In Germany, the national health institute Robert Koch has already placed the city of Madrid as a risk area for Germans, like all of Italy, Iran, a province in South Korea, the Chinese province of Hubei, the Greater East region of France and Tirol.
This Saturday morning, the Inditex group, owner of Zara, announced that the stores in Spain will all be closed.
Across the country, orders to close public spaces multiply and calls are made for people to keep their distance from each other. This morning, images of the virtually empty Atocha station (in Madrid) circulated on Twitter.
The Atocha station is almost empty. Atocha. Vacía. There are plastics on the dials that work as mammals, closed shops, travelers who take over, workers in masks. pic.twitter.com/FXMz6Je1L1
– Manuel Viejo (@LoloViejo) March 14, 2020
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