Overwhelmed Spain to deploy army to transport coronavirus corpses after 832 die in 24 hours

By Carola Frentzen Time of article published16m ago

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Madrid – Spain is to deploy its armed forces to help transport the bodies of those killed by the coronavirus, the country’s health ministry said on Saturday, as the country recorded its highest single-day death toll.

The Spanish military would have to intervene due to an overwhelming number of dead and the lack of available funeral homes, according to a statement published in the country’s official gazette.

The move came as Spain recorded its highest single-day death toll during the coronavirus pandemic with 832 new fatalities reported in the past 24 hours, the health ministry said.

In total, the number of deaths has risen since Friday to just under 5,700, meaning Spain has the second-highest death toll in the world after Italy. The number of cases rose to around 72,000 on Saturday.

The military deployment would last for the duration of the country’s current state of emergency, authorities said.

Last week the Spanish parliament approved extending the measures for a further two weeks until April 11.

A healthcare worker wearing a protective face mask and suit walks near the emergency unit at 12 de Octubre hospital during the coronavirus (Covid-19) outbreak in Madrid, Spain. Picture: Sergio Perez/Reuters
A healthcare worker wearing a protective face mask transports a patient into the emergency unit at 12 de Octubre hospital during the coronavirus (Covid-19) outbreak in Madrid, Spain. Picture: Sergio Perez/Reuters
A man wearing a face mask and gloves protection against coronavirus walks past a closed bar in Madrid, Spain. Picture: Manu Fernandez/AP
A man wearing a face mask against coronavirus buys supplies n a municipal market in Madrid, Spain. Picture: Manu Fernande/AP

Madrid remains the most severely affected region, accounting for almost half of all deaths in the country.

Earlier this week the Spanish capital was forced to convert its ice rink into a morgue due to the sheer number of deaths in the city. 

dpa