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Spain lifts ban on flights from Italy but retains block on cruise ships

Christian Fernsby |
Spain lifted a ban on direct flights and ships from Italy but retained a block on cruise ships and a quarantine for inbound travelers as a survey showed the coronavirus outbreak had also put locals off from traveling.

Topics: SPAIN    ITALY   

A reduced death rate from COVID-19 has encouraged Spain, with the world's fourth highest number of infections, to begin easing one of Europe's strictest lockdowns.

But the tourism-dependent economy is likely to have to wait until late June to welcome summer vacationers back.

Madrid surprised its European partners by introducing a two-week quarantine last week. Flights from Italy had been blocked since March 11.

Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez is preparing to ask parliament to extend until late June a state of emergency which has helped limit infections but also brought unprecedented restrictions on borders and movement, causing huge economic damage.

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