Spain bans OUTDOOR smoking and shuts nightclubs & discos as Covid-19 cases spike
Madrid has rolled out a new set of anti-coronavirus measures, shutting down some public venues and banning smoking in the street without social distancing. It comes as some 3,000 new cases of Covid-19 are being reported daily.
The new nationwide restrictions were announced on Friday by Spain’s Health Minister Salvador Illa. The official didn’t give a precise timeframe for when the restrictions would come into force, saying only that it would be within the next few days.
Young people must be particularly careful, Illa stressed, urging them to show “discipline” and follow “the measures, just like older people are already doing.”
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The restrictions include the closure of nightclubs, dancehalls, and discos, and strict rules governing restaurants and bars. For instance, their opening hours will be limited and the number of customers they can receive at a time will be regulated.
The anti-coronavirus measures also include a ban on smoking in public places and enclosed outdoor spaces where smokers cannot maintain a proper distance between one another. Similar restrictions on smoking were implemented earlier by two of Spain’s regions, Galicia and the Canary Islands.
In retirement and nursing homes, which have proved to be particularly prone to deadly Covid-19 outbreaks, all new residents and staff will be mandatorily tested for the virus. Visitors will be limited to one person a day, and outings will also be restricted.
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The new restrictions come as Spain – one of the worst-affected EU countries – saw its daily coronavirus tally rise again. Nearly 3,000 new cases have been detected in the country during the past 24-hour period. It total, it has registered more than 350,000 Covid-19 cases, including well over 28,000 deaths.
Globally, the Covid-19 tally is hovering at just below the 21 million mark, with more than 760,000 deaths, the latest figures by the Johns Hopkins University indicate. The US, Brazil, and India remain the worst-affected nations, accounting for around a half of all detected cases.
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