Spain pays tribute to coronavirus victims, employees at state occasion

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Spain has paid tribute to the nation’s victims of the brand new coronavirus and employees who put their lives in danger through the worst of the pandemic with a solemn state ceremony in Madrid.Relatives of about 100 individuals who died through the pandemic, representatives of medical personnel, police and different important employees on Thursday joined King Felipe VI and Queen Letizia, authorities members and officers from the European Union and the World Health Organization at an esplanade in Madrid’s Royal Palace.
The visitors, masked and seated in a socially distanced trend surrounding a central cauldron, included representatives from a dozen spiritual organisations and ambassadors. The ceremony was proven reside on tv and on-line.
In an emotional speech, Hernando Calleja mentioned he was sharing the ache of the lack of his brother Jose Maria, a well known journalist and author in Madrid, with different relations of “anonymous” victims. “Let’s not forget that the coronavirus was and continues to be a cold, cruel and wrecking executioner,” Calleja mentioned. The visitors have been masked and seated in a socially distanced trend surrounding a central cauldron [Pierre-Philippe Marcou/AFP] Aroa Lopez, a nurse from the Vall d’Hebron hospital in Barcelona, spoke representing employees in hospitals, well being centres and laboratories, no less than 52,600 of whom have been identified with COVID-19.
She additionally remembered truck drivers, cleaners and 1000’s of others who “took care of the millions of Spaniards who were confined”.
After telling how some well being employees made video calls between relations and dying sufferers, or held the fingers of those that didn’t need to die alone, she urged politicians to guard the general public well being system. “Who will take care of us if the person who takes care of us cannot do it? Let us never forget the lesson learned,” she mentioned.
As a reside efficiency of string music took over from the phrases, attendees left white roses by the cauldron. 
The nation’s monarch praised the residents’ response to the outbreak and referred to as for accountable behaviour in combating the virus. Officials from the EU and the WHO joined the occasion at an esplanade in Madrid’s Royal Palace [Pierre-Philippe Marcou/AFP] “We have a moral obligation to always recognise and respect the dignity of the deceased and a civic duty to promote the best values that underlie our society,” Felipe VI mentioned earlier than the ceremony got here to an finish with a minute of silence.
All Spanish political events attended the state tribute aside from the far-right Vox, whose chief has referred to as the occasion an “act of propaganda” and “an exculpatory ceremony” for the left-wing ruling coalition led by Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez.
Spain has formally recorded 28,413 sufferers who died after testing constructive for the COVID-19 illness, though extra mortality figures recommend the precise determine is 1000’s larger.
The nation is grappling with dozens of contemporary outbreaks after it emerged from a strict lockdown final month.

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