First Spanish city back in lockdown after Covid-19 rebound

Barcelona, Spain, Jul 4 (efe-epa).- Spain was on alert for a second wave of coronavirus on Saturday after 50 fresh outbreaks across the country which has seen one city go back into lockdown.

The focus of the fresh infections has been in Lleida, the capital of the province of Lleida in Catalonia, with the city and its surrounding area put back into lockdown.

The Catalan government, which has devolved powers over health services, announced the confinement of the area on Saturday, which is home to around 210,000 inhabitants.

Travel in and out of the region has been restricted, gatherings of more than 10 people have been banned in public and private and visits to nursing homes have been suspended.

The province in the north of Spain was one of the first to register new outbreaks of Covid-19, which have mostly been linked to seasonal farmworkers who have come to the area to harvest fruit during the summer season.

A total of eight hotspots have been identified with more than 4,000 confirmed cases, 356 of which were reported in the last week.

The number of coronavirus patients admitted to hospital in Lleida has tripled in the last 10 days.

Catalan Prime Minister Quim Torra said on Saturday that authorities were forced to reimpose lockdown due to “too great a growth in cases of contagion”.

The travel restrictions affect the movement of workers in and out of the region as well as deliveries for businesses.

Vehicles are allowed to cross the region on motorways or highways provided they are not coming from or going to Lleida and its surrounding area.

There have also been 13 focuses of infection in Andalusia in southern Spain as well as outbreaks in almost all of the country’s other regions.

Madrid, which was one of Spain’s epicenters of infection, announced a fresh outbreak on Friday after five people tested positive for the virus.

Spain spent more than three months in lockdown with some of the strictest restrictions in the world, which ended in June, although social distancing and mandatory masks continued.

Authorities have reported more than 250,500 confirmed cases and 28,300 deaths across the country since the start of the outbreak. EFE-EPA


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