MADRID: Spain reopened its borders with France on Sunday, getting rid of one of the most potent symbols of Europe’s battle against the coronavirus, as infections in Latin America surged past two million.
Europeans are just emerging from some of the world’s toughest lockdowns, with cars trickling across the reopened Spain-France border early on Sunday a day after Italy enjoyed its first top-flight football match in 103 days.
In the United States, which has also been taking stuttering steps to reopen even as 20 states have reported a rebound in infections, President Donald Trump held his first rally in months on Saturday.
Brazil is the second worst-affected country with almost 50,000 deaths and more than one million cases, helping to push Latin America’s total infections beyond the two million mark, according to an AFP tally early on Sunday.
The virus has now killed more than 460,000 people and infected almost nine million worldwide. Although the spread has slowed in Europe, the continent is still the worst-affected with more than 2.5 million cases.
Spain has been among Europe’s hardest hit nations, but on Sunday it lifted a slew of restrictions in a bid to get its tourism industry back up and running.
As well as opening its border with France, officials confirmed that EU nationals, those from the passport-free Schengen zone and Britons would not have to quarantine.
“We must remain on our guard and strictly follow hygiene and protection measures,” Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez said on Saturday, highlighting that the danger has not passed.