Spanish government, local authorities lock horns over Madrid lockdown
MADRID (SPAIN) – The Spanish health minister said on Friday that the government has suggested reimposing a partial lockdown on Madrid to stem the spread of the pandemic. This comes after local authorities imposed curbs on some areas of the city.
“These are the minimum measures we have to take to control the spread of the virus in the city,” Health Minister Salvador Illa said.
One of the worst-hit European countries, Spain was under strict lockdown from March until May. They were lifted in stages and based on region and finally on June 21, all restrictions were lifted. But the virus spread has surged in recent weeks.
Authorities in the capital have ordered the closure of 45 areas in Madrid, mainly where poor people reside where the rate of infection is above 1,000 cases per 100,000 people.
In what is perceived as a clash between Madrid authorities and the government, Illa’s announcement came at the same time as the capital announced only some areas will be closed.
The minister said the city authorities had the sole authority to make this decision.
As per the recommendations, people would be banned from travelling outside of the city. But they will be allowed to work, go to school and bars would remain open with certain curbs in place.