Madrid, Barcelona will not pass to next phase of exit lockdown, government says

MADRID – The cities of Madrid and Barcelona will not proceed to the next phase of Spain ending the shutdown imposed in mid-March to control one of the worst coronavirus outbreaks in Europe, said Fernando Simon, the Spanish coordinator for health emergencies.

Depending on measures such as the infection rate in regions, the government will carry out the closure in four stages. In the second phase, bars, restaurants and places of worship with limited capacity can be opened.

Neither the Madrid region nor the metropolitan areas of Barcelona were deemed willing to further relax restrictions. The densely populated regions of Madrid and Catalonia – home to Barcelona – are responsible for about half of the country’s confirmed infected cases.

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