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Spain imposes almost total quarantine to curb coronavirus

Residents can simply go out to work, shop or seek care.

Daily life is likely to change for 47 million inhabitants. Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez announced an almost total quarantine of Spain, Saturday March 14, to fight against the epidemic of coronavirus. Residents will only be able to leave their homes to go to work or for other essential reasons such as buying food. This drastic measure falls within the framework of the state of alert decreed for fifteen days in the country.

Spain, where more than 1,500 new cases have been recorded since Friday evening, is the second country most affected by the epidemic in Europe behind Italy which has already taken similar measures. In total, more than 5,700 cases have been detected in Spain and at least 183 people have died.

“The ban on driving on the streets (…) must be followed from today”said Pedro Sanchez during a speech on television. The Spanish can leave their homes to go “to work”, “buy bread”, go to the pharmacy or get treatment but “not to go to dinner with a friend”.

The Socialist Prime Minister also indicated that all shops not being essential will be closed throughout the country, a choice similar to that made in France. This measure had already been taken in several regions such as Madrid, the most affected in Spain with nearly 3,000 cases. “Our hand will not shake to prevail against the virus”, said Pedro Sanchez again.

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