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Spain to reopen to tourists as South America named virus hotspot

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Spain to reopen to tourists as South America named virus hotspot

Spain said on Saturday it would let in foreign tourists and restart top league football in the coming weeks, accelerating Europe’s exit from strict virus lockdown, as South America was labelled "a new epicentre" by the World Health Organization.

Brazil led the surge across South America, its death toll passing 21,000 on Friday from 330,000 infections, the third biggest caseload of any country in a pandemic that has infected 5.25 million globally and killed more than 338,000. In Europe, which has now registered more than two million infections, the figures were stabilising in many countries, prompting governments to move away from economically ruinous lockdowns towards lighter social distancing measures. In Spain, which has enforced one of the world’s strictest lockdowns since mid-March, Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez announced the resumption of tourism and football.

"From the month of July, entry for foreign tourists into Spain will resume in secure conditions," he said, adding that La Liga football could return on June 8.

The United States, meanwhile, still faces the world’s worst outbreak, but President Donald Trump is determined to reopen the economy despite the risk of further infections and deaths.

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His latest demand was that local officials should reopen religious buildings for full services, saying: "In America, we need more prayer, not less."

The US economy has shed almost 40 million jobs since the start of the pandemic and many companies have gone to the wall — car-rental giant Hertz the latest to hit trouble, filing for bankruptcy for its North American operations late on Friday.

But city mayors and state governors say it is too early to lift the measures.- Brighter outlook for tourists -"In […]

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