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UPDATED MAP: Where in Spain are restrictions in place and what are they?

There are currently perimeter lockdowns in place across parts of Spain as well as a nationwide curfew and limits on the number of people allowed to meet in a group.

UPDATED MAP: Where in Spain are restrictions in place and what are they?
Map by RTVE

UPDATE: The whole of Spain, except the Canary Islands, now has a curfew imposed that limits movement outside the home between 11pm and 6am (although it can shift an hour either way depending on the region) since a new state of alarm was declared on Sunday.

READ MORE: What are the rules under Spain's new state of alarm?

In total some 2,470  municipalities across the nation have measures imposed to restrict movement beyond the curfew as the true number of cases in Spain is thought to have reached over 3 million.

Perimeter confinements

The entire regions of Navarra and La Rioja as well as 76 municipalities across Spain have perimeter confinements restricting the movements of 6.9 million people, some 14.7 percent of the Spanish population.

A total of 13 provinces have perimeter confinements imposed within them as the criteria in those municipalities meets conditions set by Spain’s Health Ministry.

A municipality is confined if it has over 100,00 population and has reported more than 500 cases per 100,000 inhabitants over the previous 14 days; it must have 35 percent or more intensive care beds occupied by Covid-19 patients, and positive results in at least 10 percent of PCR tests.   

The region of Navarra imposed a perimeter lockdown at its borders from Thursday October 22nd while Rioja introduces the measure from Friday October 23rd.

In Castilla y Leon perimeter confinements are in place in the cities of Ponferrada, Aranda de Duero, Burgos, Salamanca, León, Palencia, Miranda de Ebro, San Andrés del Rabanedo, San Pedro Latarce, Pedrajas de San and Esteban. This weekend Íscar and Medina del Campo see their confinement limited but other restrictions are still in place for another week.

The cities of Zaragoza, Huesca and Teruel, the three provincial capitals in Aragon, all have perimeter confinements in force.

The city of Madrid and nine other municipalities around it currently has a perimeter confinement but that will be lifted on Saturday October 24 when the State of Emergency declared by Spain’s government over the region expires. On Monday new restrictions will be put in place in 32 healthcare zones that include perimeter confinement

In Andalusia, the town of Écija has a perimeter confinement as does Villanueva de la Vera and Hoyos in Caceres province of Extremadura and Almendraleja and Villanueva del Fresno in Badajoz province.

While in Galicia, such measures have also been imposed on Verín, Oímbra and Vilardevós, as well as Ourense capital, Barbadás,  O Carballiño, O Irixo and Boborás. 

To check the restrictions in place in each municpality, RTVE have produced this interactive map.

Map: RTVE

Return to the “de-escalation phases”

Remember the 'de-escalation phases' applied to different parts of Spain on a step-by-step basis as the nation came out of lockdown back in May and June?

The rules for Phase 1 and Phase 2, which limits occupancy in bars and restaurants as well as social group sizes are now in place across much of the country.

Well, some 97 municipal areas have dropped down a phase (the majority in Asturias) and another 1,882 are subject to different types of restrictions affecting 24 million residents, almost half of the population.

Here’s a reminder of the rules for Phase 1 and Phase 2.

Limits on social groups

The state of alarm limits social meetings to a maximum of six people both in private places and public spaces, unless they live together under the same roof across Spain except the Canary Islands. But the regional governments have the authority to lower the maximum number allowed in a social gathering. Galicia has already set a limit of five.

Other restrictions

Last week Catalonia imposed a region-wide ban on restaurants and bars opening except for take-away food. And Melilla took the same measure on Friday.

READ MORE: 

 

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COVID-19 ALERT

Covid-19: European summer holidays threatened by rise of subvariants

A resurgence of Covid-19 cases in Europe, this time driven by new, fast-spreading Omicron subvariants, is once again threatening to disrupt people's summer plans.

Covid-19: European summer holidays threatened by rise of subvariants

Several Western European nations have recently recorded their highest daily case numbers in months, due in part to Omicron sub-variants BA.4 and BA.5.

The increase in cases has spurred calls for increased vigilance across a continent that has relaxed most if not all coronavirus restrictions.

The first resurgence came in May in Portugal, where BA.5 propelled a wave that hit almost 30,000 cases a day at the beginning of June. That wave has since started to subside, however.

READ ALSO: KEY POINTS: German Health Ministry lays out autumn Covid plan

Italy recorded more than 62,700 cases on Tuesday, nearly doubling the number from the previous week, the health ministry said. 

Germany meanwhile reported more than 122,000 cases on Tuesday. 

France recorded over 95,000 cases on Tuesday, its highest daily number since late April, representing a 45-percent increase in just a week.

Austria this Wednesday recorded more than 10,000 for the first time since April.

READ ALSO: Italy’s transport mask rule extended to September as Covid rate rises

Cases have also surged in Britain, where there has been a seven-fold increase in Omicron reinfection, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS).

The ONS blamed the rise on the BA.4 and BA.5 variants, but also said Covid fell to the sixth most common cause of death in May, accounting for 3.3 percent of all deaths in England and Wales.

BA.5 ‘taking over’

Mircea Sofonea, an epidemiologist at the University of Montpellier, said Covid’s European summer wave could be explained by two factors.

READ ALSO: 11,000 new cases: Will Austria reintroduce restrictions as infection numbers rise?

One is declining immunity, because “the protection conferred by an infection or a vaccine dose decreases in time,” he told AFP.

The other came down to the new subvariants BA.4 and particularly BA.5, which are spreading more quickly because they appear to be both more contagious and better able to escape immunity.

Olivier Schwartz, head of the virus and immunity unit at the Pasteur Institute in Paris, said BA.5 was “taking over” because it is 10 percent more contagious than BA.2.

“We are faced with a continuous evolution of the virus, which encounters people who already have antibodies — because they have been previously infected or vaccinated — and then must find a selective advantage to be able to sneak in,” he said.

READ ALSO: Tourists: What to do if you test positive for Covid in France

But are the new subvariants more severe?

“Based on limited data, there is no evidence of BA.4 and BA.5 being associated with increased infection severity compared to the circulating variants BA.1 and BA.2,” the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) said last week.

But rising cases can result in increasing hospitalisations and deaths, the ECDC warned.

Could masks be making a comeback over summer? (Photo by OSCAR DEL POZO / AFP)

Alain Fischer, who coordinates France’s pandemic vaccine strategy, warned that the country’s hospitalisations had begun to rise, which would likely lead to more intensive care admissions and eventually more deaths.

However, in Germany, virologist Klaus Stohr told the ZDF channel that “nothing dramatic will happen in the intensive care units in hospitals”.

Return of the mask? 

The ECDC called on European countries to “remain vigilant” by maintaining testing and surveillance systems.

“It is expected that additional booster doses will be needed for those groups most at risk of severe disease, in anticipation of future waves,” it added.

Faced with rising cases, last week Italy’s government chose to extend a requirement to wear medical grade FFP2 masks on public transport until September 30.

“I want to continue to recommend protecting yourself by getting a second booster shot,” said Italy’s Health Minister Roberto Speranza, who recently tested positive for Covid.

READ ALSO: Spain to offer fourth Covid-19 vaccine dose to ‘entire population’

Fischer said France had “clearly insufficient vaccination rates” and that a second booster shot was needed.

Germany’s government is waiting on expert advice on June 30 to decide whether to reimpose mandatory mask-wearing rules indoors.

The chairman of the World Medical Association, German doctor Frank Ulrich Montgomery, has recommended a “toolbox” against the Covid wave that includes mask-wearing, vaccination and limiting the number of contacts.

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