Spain counts 17 new virus deaths in 24 hours

Spain on Friday registered 17 virus deaths within 24 hours, its highest daily COVID-19 toll since June 19.

The update came as many Spaniards were gearing up to go on holiday and as the country preparing to reopen its frontiers on Saturday to travellers from 12 other countries outside the European Union.

Spain had already opened its borders to EU nations on June 21 as well as residents of the passport-free Schengen zone.

The health ministry said it had reinforced its presence at Spain’s airports to check incoming travellers, with an extra 650 staff to add to the 600 already in place.

On Thursday, the health ministry said five people had died overnight, giving a weekly total of 24 deaths.

Also on Thursday, Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez said Spain must “learn to live with the virus” and carry on as normal, “without lowering our guard”.

Spain has been badly hit by the epidemic, suffering 28,385 deaths, Europe’s fourth-highest toll after the United Kingdom, Italy and France.

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