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Spain will require a negative PCR test at the French border

Spanish authorities announced on Saturday that a negative PCR test of less than 72 hours would now be required for anyone wishing to cross the French land border to travel to Spain. The measure, which will take effect on Tuesday and applies to people over the age of 6, comes as Spain steps up restrictions in hopes of avoiding an increase in cases of Covid-19 contamination during Holy Week , which begins this weekend.

An unprecedented requirement

This is the first time that such a requirement has been imposed by Spain on those who cross this land border. Until now, this had only been required for arrivals by air. “They must have a PCR test (RT-PCR), TMA test or other type of diagnostic test for SARS-CoV-2 based on equivalent molecular techniques, with a negative result, performed within 72 hours of the test. arrival “, indicates the Official Journal of the Spanish government published on Saturday.

Only people working in road transport and cross-border workers will be exempt, as well as people living in the border area provided they stay within a radius of 30 kilometers around their home. Such a measure has already been in place since January 31 for people entering France from Spain by air, land or sea, and must present a negative test. The rule applies from 11 years old.

Spain is a refuge for Europeans

Until mid-March, the number of infections was steadily declining in Spain but it started to climb again, with government figures showing 7,586 new cases in 24 hours on Friday, bringing the total number of cases to nearly 3.3 million and deaths over 75,000. In France, daily cases have almost doubled since the start of the month. The bar of 200,000 new weekly cases has been crossed and more than 94,000 people have died since the start of the epidemic.

Favorite destination in the middle of Covid with its bars open and its curfew at 11:00 p.m., Madrid has become a refuge for European tourists, especially French, while its inhabitants are prohibited from leaving the region. This difference in treatment exasperates the Spaniards, even more with the approach of Holy Week, an extremely popular holiday in the country and when people are used to traveling to meet up with their families. The Spanish decision comes after Germany on Friday classified entire France, including overseas territories, as a “high risk” area for Covid-19 infection.

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