Madrid regional chief hits out at Spanish government Covid measures

The woman at the heart of the dispute over one of Europe’s coronavirus hotspots says Spain’s government is exacerbating the crisis and depicts herself as a bulwark against socialist revolutionaries in its ranks. 

To her supporters, Isabel Díaz Ayuso, head of Madrid’s regional government and perhaps the second most powerful elected official in the country, is the voice of resistance against a dangerous leftwing government running roughshod over democratic institutions and devastating the motor of the Spanish economy. 

To her detractors, the leader of the region of 6.6m people is a rightwing ideologue who has been far too slow in responding to some of the highest infection rates in Europe.

Ms Díaz Ayuso, a 41-year-old who took office last year after a career largely spent in communications for her centre-right People’s party, portrays the regional administration as one of the most important checks on what she says is an “authoritarian”

Read More

Madrid residents angry as Spain government reimposes state of emergency

By Guillermo Martinez

MADRID (Reuters) – People in Madrid and the surrounding towns reacted with anger on Friday after the Socialist-led government invoked a state of emergency to reimpose with immediate effect a partial lockdown to curb the spread of the new coronavirus.

Some of the 3.8 million people affected in the capital and eight satellite towns said the politicians had bickered while contagion rates soared.

“They are clowns, they are making fun of us as much as they can and more. They (politicians) have no shame,” said Pilar Lopez, a cleaner.

Shop assistant Linda, who did not give her second name, thought the blanket state of emergency imposed on the capital was going too far.

“I think certain areas should be restricted, but not the entire Madrid region,” she said.

Felix, 49, a Madrid resident, blamed irresponsible behaviour by residents for high infection rates.

“It’s also got to do

Read More

Spain’s government imposes state of emergency ahead of a holiday weekend, to prevent Madrid residents from spreading COVID-19

Madrid’s Puerta de Alcala on Oct. 3, 2020.


MarketWatch/Kollmeyer

Just hours ahead of the start of a long holiday weekend, the Spanish government put the Madrid region under a state of emergency on Friday, determined to stop an exodus of potentially infected residents.

In past years, Monday’s Hispanic Day holiday would have seen Spaniards clog highways and trains to reach their beach and countryside second homes. But surging coronavirus cases in the Madrid region, one of the worst infected in Spain, had the government scrambling to curtail those plans.

Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez’s leftist coalition government and Madrid’s right-wing premier Isabel Díaz Ayuso have been at loggerheads for weeks over how to combat the region’s climbing cases.

A week ago, fresh restrictions were ordered by the central government for all areas of Spain that met certain criteria, which included Madrid. The rules limit residents to their region or municipality, except

Read More

Lock down or face state of emergency, Spanish government tells Madrid

MADRID (Reuters) – Madrid must enforce travel restrictions ordered by the health ministry to limit novel coronavirus outbreaks or the national government will impose a state of emergency that would force it to comply, the government said late on Thursday.



a man walking in the snow: Passengers arrive at Adolfo Suarez Barajas airport in Madrid


© Reuters/SERGIO PEREZ
Passengers arrive at Adolfo Suarez Barajas airport in Madrid

In the latest escalation of tensions between the two administrations, the government said it would hold an extraordinary cabinet meeting on Friday morning to decree the state of emergency if Madrid does not impose the restrictions or request intervention.

Following a Health Ministry order, Madrid authorities reluctantly barred all non essential travel in and out of the city and nine surrounding towns last Friday to curb the spread of COVID-19 in one of Europe’s worst virus hotspots.

But a Madrid regional court on Thursday annulled the measures, ruling the government had overstepped its mandate and the restrictions

Read More

Madrid must impose travel restrictions or face state of emergency, Spanish government says

MADRID (Reuters) – Madrid must enforce travel restrictions ordered by the health ministry to limit novel coronavirus outbreaks or the national government will impose a state of emergency that would force it to comply, the government said late on Thursday.

The government will hold an extraordinary cabinet meeting on Friday morning to decree the state of emergency if Madrid does not impose the restrictions or request intervention, the government said.

Following a Health Ministry order, Madrid authorities reluctantly barred all non essential travel to and from the city and nine surrounding towns last Friday to curb the spread of COVID-19 in one of Europe’s worst virus hotspots. [nL8N2GZ2PQ][nL8N2GW30R]

A Madrid regional court on Thursday annulled the measures ordered by the national health ministry, ruling the government had overstepped its mandate and the restrictions interfered with fundamental human rights.

Declaring a state of emergency – the same legal framework that underpinned

Read More

Madrid court annuls central government’s COVID-19 curbs on city

By Emma Pinedo and Inti Landauro

MADRID (Reuters) – A Madrid court on Thursday struck down a government order imposing a partial coronavirus lockdown on the Spanish capital, ruling in favour of the Madrid region in a standoff with national authorities just before a long holiday weekend.

Under the Health Ministry’s order, Madrid regional authorities on Friday barred residents from leaving the area, including nine satellite towns, without a valid reason, and imposed other measures to curb the spread of COVID-19 in one of Europe’s worst virus hotspots.

Regional government chief Isabel Diaz Ayuso had opposed the order, saying it would ravage the region’s economy, also arguing the ministry had no power to impose such curbs on a region.

The Madrid regional court sided with her in its ruling, calling the restrictions “interference by public authorities in citizens’ fundamental rights without the legal mandate to support it”.

The restrictions imposed

Read More

Madrid court annuls central government’s COVID curbs on city

MADRID (Reuters) – A Madrid court on Thursday struck down a government order imposing a partial lockdown on the city and nine satellite towns, ruling in favour of the Madrid region in a standoff with national authorities.

Under the health ministry’s order, Madrid regional authorities on Friday barred residents from leaving the area without a valid reason, and imposed other restrictive measures to curb the spread of COVID-19 contagion in one of Europe’s worst virus hotspots.

But regional government chief Isabel Diaz Ayuso had opposed the order, saying it would ravage the region’s economy, also arguing the ministry had no power to impose such curbs on a region.

The Madrid regional court sided with her in its ruling, calling the restrictions “interference by public authorities in citizens’ fundamental rights without the legal mandate to support it.”

In an initial reaction from the government – which can appeal the ruling –

Read More

‘You Cannot Lock Down Everybody’ Madrid Tells Spanish Government in COVID Spat | World News

MADRID (Reuters) – “You cannot lock down everybody,” the chief of the Madrid region said on Thursday, pushing back against the Spanish government’s plan to confine the capital city to tackle a surge in COVID-19 cases.

The health ministry said late on Wednesday that the central government was overriding regional authorities and would impose a lockdown of the city of over 3 million people and some surrounding towns in the coming days.

The ministry published the decision in an official journal and said regional and local authorities would have 48 hours to comply once a separate official order was published, though it did not say when that would happen.

But Madrid region chief Isabel Diaz Ayuso rejected the move, saying the committee that took the decision had no legal authority to do so without a consensus.

“You cannot lock down everybody,” Diaz Ayuso said on esRadio. “I’m sure the Madrid

Read More

Spain government to do ‘whatever it takes’ to curb Madrid surge

Spain’s government on Monday warned the Madrid authorities it could take drastic measures if the region failed to move decisively to slow the uncontrolled spread of coronavirus infections. 

The city and the surrounding region is at the epicentre of a second wave of coronavirus that is sweeping Spain, having claimed more than 31,000 lives and infected over 700,000 in the highest infection rate in the European Union.

Over the past week, the Madrid authorities have placed around a million people under partial lockdown, but the measures have fallen well short of the central government’s demands, triggering a warning from Justice Minister Juan Carlos Campo. 

If Madrid’s conservative-led regional government did not toughen its strategy, “there is no doubt that (the central government) is prepared to do whatever is necessary” to rein in the virus, he told Spain’s RNE public radio. 

Although Spain is struggling with the highest number of new

Read More

Madrid resists government pressure to extend soft lockdown

MADRID (AP) — Health authorities in Madrid are expanding restrictions on movement to a further eight areas of the Spanish capital, which is leading the country’s contagion curve, despite a recommendation from the national government that the partial lockdown should apply to all the city.

Over 850,000 residents in 37 neighborhoods have been confined this week to their areas unless they have a reason to go elsewhere, while maximum capacity in shops and restaurants has been reduced.

Those limitations will now be expanded to 160,000 more people in areas where more than 1,000 people per 100,000 residents have tested positive for the new virus in the past two weeks — the highest rates in Europe — the Madrid regional government announced Friday.

Throughout Madrid and its surrounding region, gatherings are limited to a maximum of 6 people.

In a hastily organized press conference, national Health Minister Salvador Illa said that

Read More