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More COVID-19 Restrictions in Store for Hard-Hit Madrid

Αssociated Press

A local police officer talks with a woman at a checkpoint in the Vallecas neighborhood in Madrid, Spain, Wednesday, Sept. 23, 2020. (AP Photo/Manu Fernandez)

MADRID — Health authorities in Madrid may extend to more communities the restrictions on movement it imposed on areas of the Spanish capital with high coronavirus infection rates.

About 860,000 Madrid residents already are required to justify trips out of 37 neighborhoods, mostly working-class areas. People have complained that the restrictions stigmatize the poor.

The region’s deputy health chief, Antonio Zapatero, says a decision on additional measures, including possible customer limits in restaurants, would be announced Friday,

Zapatero says the outbreak situation in the Madrid region, which has a population of 6.6 million, was one of “sustained increase.”

Madrid had a contagion rate of 772 cases per 100,000 inhabitants in 14 days, nearly three times Spain’s national average of 287 cases per 100,000.

Spain recorded 241 more virus-related deaths on Tuesday, bringing the total confirmed death toll to 30,904.