HOLIDAYMAKERS in Majorca and Ibiza are being blamed for the spike in coronavirus cases in Germany and Italy.
Germany has issued a blanket warning against travel to Spain amid concerns that tourists returning from “party” holidays are causing a rise in the infection rate.
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Coronavirus has spread to all but 22 of Germany’s 294 districts and the spike in infections appears to be driven by the young.
The average age of new cases has fallen to 34, the lowest on record.
Germans have been advised to avoid public gatherings and to restrict celebrations with friends and relatives.
In the past week, Spain has recorded 55 new infections for every 100,000 people, narrowly above the German government’s risk threshold of 50 cases per 100,000 people.
The figure in the Balearics is 77 per 100,000.
Tens of thousands of Germans, including around 30,000 in the Balearics alone, will have to self-isolate when they return home if they cannot provide a negative test result.
The decision has been described as a “death blow” to destinations that rely on German tourism.
Travel firm Tui immediately cancelled all package tours to Spain, excluding the Canary Islands, where infections remain comparatively low.
German health minister Jens Spahn said: “It’s not a travel ban but anyone who comes back from a holiday in Spain must go into quarantine unless they test negative.
“Party holidays are irresponsible in this pandemic,” he told Bild.
Almost 35,000 cases were recorded in Spain over the past two weeks, including 7,750 new infections on Friday.
There has also been a spike in coronavirus cases in Italy.
More than 600 new infections were reported on Saturday – the first time the number had topped 600 since May.
Several of the new cases have reportedly been linked to nightclubs but ministers also said that the increase in cases across Europe had influenced their decision to impose new measures.
Last week, health minister Roberto Speranza told Corriere della Sera: “Not to worry about new cases from abroad would be unconscionable.”
Citing France, Spain and the Balkans, he said: “Italy is surrounded by contagions.”
Wearing a face mask is to become mandatory between 6pm and 6am and nightclubs have been ordered to shut their doors.
Pierpaolo Paradiso, manager of the Praja disco in Gallipoli, told Sky News Italia: “We have become a scapegoat for the infections in Italy even though no infection has been reported in any disco.”
Travellers arriving at Rome Fiuminico airport from Spain are now being tested as many of the cases are being brought into the country from overseas.
Passengers can either get tested immediately or within 48 hours at a health centre close to their home.