The Daily Telegraph

Spain blames partygoers as outbreaks are traced to bars

- By Graham Keeley in Madrid

CASES of coronaviru­s in Spain have tripled in the past three weeks as more new infections are linked to young people going to parties, health authoritie­s have said.

Since one of Europe’s strictest lockdowns came to an end last month, Spaniards have relaxed back into daily life and the number of clusters has soared to 201 across the country.

According to data from the Spanish health ministry, the occurrence of Covid-19 cases has jumped from eight cases per 100,000 at the end of June, when the country’s state of emergency ended, to 27 per 100,000 – the same ratio as when Spain started to ease lockdown measures on May 11.

Around half of all the outbreaks can be traced to gatherings of families or discos and bars, health authoritie­s said.

A study by the Carlos III Institute in Madrid found the number of people aged 15 and 29 who tested positive for coronaviru­s was now triple that of those aged between 60 and 79.

In Córdoba, in southern Spain, 73 people tested positive after a disco and 670 partygoers had to be traced.

The highest numbers of outbreaks have been found in Catalonia, Aragon and the Basque region. Barcelona has limited beach access and the Catalan government has ordered a localised lockdown affecting 160,000 people.

Over the weekend 4,581 new cases were recorded. All regions except Madrid and the Canary Islands have made wearing masks compulsory, even when social distancing can be maintained.

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