Foreign visitors to Spain will no longer have to undergo a two-week quarantine from 1 July, the government has announced. It said the measure had been finalized in a cabinet meeting on Monday. The news comes as the UK government prepares to bring in its own 14-day quarantine policy from 8 June. Spain normally attracts 80 million tourists a year, with the sector providing more than 12% of the country’s GDP.
Spain hopes to welcome tourists starting in “late June,” according to the country’s transportation minister. The government last week introduced a 14-day quarantine period for visitors entering the country, saying it was necessary to avoid a second peak of COVID-19 infections. José Luis Ábalos now says the two-week quarantine will be phased out and travel restrictions will be gradually lifted.
Spain has reported 4,273 new cases of the coronavirus with 637 new deaths, the fourth day the daily totals have declined from the previous day. The total deaths in the country from COVID-19 as of Monday stands at 13,055 among 135,032 cases. The new numbers offer another glimmer of hope in Europe, after Italy on Sunday saw its death toll at its lowest in more than two weeks.
Spain has become the third country to confirm more cases of coronavirus than China – as its number of deaths rose by 812 in a day to reach a total of 7,340. Confirmed COVID-19 cases have increased by 6,398 since Sunday to reach 85,195 in total, Spain’s health ministry said. The country has now joined the United States and Italy in having more coronavirus cases than China.
A total of 3,434 coronavirus patients have now have died in Spain – more than the recorded number of deaths in China where the outbreak began. Spain now has the world’s second-highest tally of COVID-19 deaths after 738 more were reported on Wednesday, the country’s deadliest toll in one day. France – another of Europe’s worst-hit nations – also reported 231 more deaths over the same 24-hour period, taking its total to 1,331 deaths.
Spain’s King Felipe VI has renounced his personal inheritance from his father and stripped the former king Juan Carlos of his annual stipend after it was alleged that Felipe VI was poised to receive millions of euros from a secret offshore fund with ties to Saudi Arabia. The former head of state abdicated in 2014, after a series of scandals sent his popularity plummeting.
A vast sandstorm from the Sahara has shrouded Spain’s Canary Islands, disrupting travel plans for tourists flying in and out. Airport operator Aena cancelled, suspended or diverted all flights to and from the islands at the weekend, citing low visibility. Strong winds have carried a dense cloud of sand from the Saharan desert, some 500km (300 miles) across the Atlantic Ocean.
A violent storm that has ravaged parts of Spain with heavy rain and violent winds has left at least 13 people dead. Spanish authorities said four people were still missing after Storm Gloria triggered floods and swept away roads. Storm Gloria swept into the Balearic Islands – which include the holiday island of Majorca – last weekend with torrential rain whipped up by winds of 100km/h (62mph).
Masked protesters set bins on fire and threw rocks and glass bottles at police who responded with foam bullets in a street near Camp Nou stadium as Barcelona and Real Madrid faced off Wednesday in the first clásico of the season. These were the first violent incidents in Catalonia since October when Spain’s top court jailed nine Catalan separatist leaders over their role in a failed 2017 bid for independence.
A submarine believed to be carrying around 3.5 tonnes of cocaine has been towed into port after being intercepted off the Spanish coast. It sank as police tried to intercept it in the Aldan inlet in the Galicia region at the weekend. It’s believed the crew tried to sink it on purpose. Two Ecuadorian nationals have been arrested but another person managed to escape.