Thursday March 26, 2020
The Spaniards have been under house arrest for eleven days and are not even allowed to leave their apartments to go jogging or walking. The hopes for an early end to this condition have now evaporated.
In Spain, which was particularly hard hit by the coronavirus crisis, the almost 47 million citizens now have to remain largely at home until April 11th. The parliament in Madrid approved an application by the left government to extend the alarm condition by another two weeks early Thursday morning. As part of this third-highest emergency level, a strict exit ban has been in force across the country since March 15. Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez spoke in his speech of a "nightmare", which will "soon be over". His government is doing everything for that. The extension of the alarm condition was accepted after an eleven-hour marathon session at around two in the morning without a vote against. Only 43 out of a total of 350 MPs personally participated in the debate and subsequent vote in the "Congreso de los Diputados". 307 preferred to cast their vote remotely because of the virus.Peak expected later this weekThe authorities hope that the climax of the crisis will be reached this week thanks to strict measures. Only journeys to work, to the doctor and to the purchase of food and medication are currently permitted. Citizens can also leave their homes to look after children, the elderly and those in need, or to go out with the dog. Unlike other countries with similar restrictions on freedom of movement, Madrid also prohibits sports or outdoor walks. There are a lot of police controls, rule-breakers face heavy fines or even jail terms, and despite all the measures taken to slow the spread of the virus, Spain overtook China on Wednesday in terms of deaths. More than 3,400 fatalities have already been counted. After Italy, Spain is the most affected country in Europe. The number of people infected with the Sars CoV-2 virus in Spain rose to just under 48,000 on Wednesday – almost 8,000 more than on Tuesday.