By Borja Méndez
Madrid, Oct 25 (efe-epa).- Police in Madrid have shut down 400 illegal parties in the Spanish capital this month alone, however Alejandro, an engineering student who organizes gatherings, has managed to evade detection so far and insists his events do not risk spreading Covid-19.
“It’s always the same people and I don’t think we spread it because we maintain social distancing,” Alejandro, who declined to give his surname, told Efe.
Spanish health authorities have highlighted parties and large social gatherings as being two of the main drivers behind the spread of Covid-19 in the country.
Spain’s night clubs remain closed for the time being as a measure to curb the spread of Covid-19, a predicament that has cost the nightlife industry millions of euros in losses.
But some people have decided to circumvent the strict coronavirus rules in Madrid — where social gatherings are limited to six people —by clandestinely re-purposing apartments and fields to host parties.
It is not just in the capital. Police in the northeastern region of Catalonia on Saturday dispersed several illegal parties and two large ‘botellones’ (street drinking meet-ups) attended by over 100 people.
Alejandro, 28, “adapts” a plot of public land in the Madrid region every weekend, providing him and his friends a space to relax and drink, he says.
Manuel is the same age as Alejandro but, as a police officer in the capital, he sees a different side to the story. He now spends his nights at the weekend on patrol to ensure members of the public comply with Covid-19 regulations in Madrid.
“They’re the same age as me, which is why I don’t understand why, in the situation we’re in, they’d be having parties,” says Manuel, who also preferred not to give his surname.