Spain enters period of mourning as coronavirus deaths continue to spike

Spain officially entered a period of mourning on Sunday as the coronavirus death toll jumped to an estimated 6,606.

The government ordered that flags be flown at half-staff and a minute of silence be observed every day to pay respects for the dead even as the country has continued to grapple with the COVID-19 outbreak, which has infected over 78,000 people in Spain to date.

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Despite bars, restaurants, schools and shops largely staying closed for weeks, officials in the country took additional precautions to stop the spread of coronavirus by mandating that all non-essential workers do their jobs from home until April 9, Reuters reported.

Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez announced that workers would receive their salaries until that date, but would have to make up the missed hours thereafter before the end of the year.

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Business groups have worried about the impact that shuttering businesses and moving them to remote work would have on the economy, but Labor Minister Yolanda Díaz reiterated the move was necessary to "reduce mobility" and flatten the curve of coronavirus cases.