Spain is the country with the third-highest number of coronavirus infections around the world. The Ministry of Health has announced there are 21,571 cases in Spain, 1,141 of which are in intensive care and a further 1,093 have died of the virus. But how long will Spain be on lockdown?
Spain is the second-worst affected country in Europe, with only Italy reporting more cases and deaths on the continent.
Around the world, only China has more confirmed cases.
The entire country is now under lockdown after the government implemented the measure to try to stop the spread of the disease any further.
Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez called the virus a “cruel” disease which paralyses the human need to socialise.
On Wednesday, he told a near-empty parliament the “worst is yet to come”.
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Most Spaniards have adhered to the government mandate of staying inside.
However, some Spaniards have been caught venturing outside without valid reasons.
In response, these individuals have been fined or even arrested.
The number of arrests during the first five days of lockdown amounted to 157 people by Friday morning, with Madrid alone issuing 907 people with fines for breaking the rules of lockdown.
On Friday, the Interior Ministry said the first week of lockdown had been a useful transition period.
However, it now intended to “implement fully the state of alert” as it warned it would be stepping up measures.
The Ministry also said it intended to boost police numbers with an additional 131,000 military personnel to impose the lockdown.
People are only permitted to head outside their homes for essential shopping trips or to walk their dogs.
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In Madrid, there are drone patrols on the streets and blare warnings to advise people to stay at home through speakers.
In Murcia, police have sent police cars down its deserted streets and make announcements through megaphones.
As all but essential travel has now been forbidden, the Spanish Transport Minister Josè Luis Ábalos revealed road traffic has dropped to a tenth of 2019 levels.
Air travel has also dropped by half, but Mr Ábalos said there are no plans to permanently suspend air travel.
Spain closed its borders at midnight on Monday, March 16, to slow the spread of the virus.
The measure does not mean the borders are closed completely, but only Spanish citizens are permitted to cross the border into Spain.
Spanish health authorities have warned the peak of the crisis is still a few days away.
Frontline care workers have described hospitals as already operating near capacity and struggling with severe shortages of protective gear such as masks and gloves.
How long is Spain on lockdown?
Mr Ábalos warned on Monday the lockdown will “last more than 15 days” since the period would not alone be enough for the country to “win the battle” against the coronavirus.
This means the official lockdown will last until at least the end of March.
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