The number of Coronavirus infections in Spain has now passed the 1,200 mark with 31 people now known to have been killed.
The outbreak saw a massive acceleration overnight with numbers jumping from 589 on Sunday to over 1,200 on Monday.
It means that Spain is now the second most infected country in Europe behind Italy which has seen 60 Million of its citizens placed on lock-down. So far Italy has had over 9,000 people infected with over 450 deaths.
The news has marked a turning point in the development of the virus in Spain and forced the government to adopt firm measures to prevent further contaminations after crunch talks on Monday.
Currently, the two regions with the highest number of infections are Madrid with 469 and the Basque Country with 149.
As a result, the national and regional governments on Monday agreed to close all schools and colleges in Madrid and Vitoria meaning that over 1.3 Million students and around 100,000 teachers would be off school for up to two weeks.
The shutdown will include nurseries, primary and secondary schools along with vocational training centres and universities.
Public transport in Madrid including trains and buses are also having to be disinfected on a daily basis to contain the spread.
In a press conference, head of the Madrid region Isabel Diaz Ayuso said, “It wasn’t easy to make this decision but public health must come above everything”.
In a separate news conference, Health Minister Salvador Illa said, “These measures imply a disruption to normal activity in these places, but I appeal for your understanding as they are measures that we consider necessary in these areas”.
Sporting events have also come under the spotlight with Barcelona’s Champion’s League match against Napoli on Wednesday night now being played behind closed doors.
The global number of Covid-19 Coronavirus cases has now exceeded 109,000 with over 3,800 deaths.
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March 16, 2020