Spain paradox: Locals furious as French tourists flock in despite Covid restrictions

Spain: Residents 'furious' as travel restrictions are lifted

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Spaniards are furious at the French as international tourists pile into Spain in their thousands for holidays despite France being in the grip of a third wave of Covid. Reporter Jaime Velazquez told Euronews that the Spanish feel the situation is “nonsense” as they cannot move freely due to travel restrictions but foreign tourists from high-transmission areas can. Despite travellers to the country requiring a negative Covid test many Spaniards are concernded cases will slip through the net and bring cases into the country. 

Mr Velazquez said: “For Spaniards, it makes absolute nonsense the fact that they cannot move freely across regions.

While foreign nationals, some of them coming from high transmission areas, can come here to enjoy the holidays.”

He added that despite requiring a negative Covid test to enter Spain, many residents “are afraid the French can carry the virus” with them especially now that the cases are on the rise in Spain.

The reporter said concerns are mounting further as areas such as the Spanish capital Madrid are now at “extremely high-risk levels of Covid”. 

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But the reporter said there is a dilemma because the French tourists are helping to kickstart the Spanish economy and tourism is one of Spains biggest industries.

He said: “But French nationals have also been a lifeline for the Spanish hospitality sector.”

He explained how the hospitality sector had been hit incredibly hard by the pandemic and tourists will have to stick to the same rules as Spaniards.

The Euronews reporter went on to say that despite the outrage from residents the Spanish central government insists it is just a matter of ‘reciprocity’ as Spaniards are allowed to visit France at the moment too. 

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The shocking news comes despite France battling a massive third wave of coronavirus.

Health experts across France have pleaded with French President Emmanuel Macron to lockdown Paris now or face a catastrophic ICU overload.

Speaking to France24, one expert warned France warned that if Paris is not locked down immediately there will be 30 percent more patients in critical care compared to during the first wave.

The dire warnings come as one person is admitted to ICU every 12 minutes in France in what is being described as nearing an ‘ICU catastrophe’.

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But despite the open borders concerns have mounted in Spain recently.

Cases have been soaring across the country.

The news comes as Spain said the EU digital vaccine certificates will be ready in June at latest which will allow tourists who have received the vaccine to travel freely across Europe if they can present a vaccine passport.

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