CATALAN president Quim Torra has revealed a five-step plan to ease Covid-19 lockdown restrictions once the number of cases are down and pressure on hospital intensive care units drops.

Torra was speaking to journalists after he and other regional leaders met Spanish prime minister Pedro Sanchez. His plan has not yet been approved, but he said he had asked to manage the confinement from Catalonia because “every region requires a specific response”.

It would see a gradual lifting of restrictions, starting with healthy workers returning to work and all fit individuals being allowed out. The opening of schools, bars, and restaurants would follow, as well events for less than 30 people. Eventually, events with more than 30 people would also be permitted.

The Catalan leader also suggested the wearing of face masks could become mandatory, once access to them for all had been guaranteed.

Torra’s plan came after Spain reported its lowest daily death toll for coronavirus victims in nearly a month.

The outbreak has killed more than 20,000 people, but health officials said yesterday that another 410 had died in the preceding 24 hours – the lowest daily total since March 22. Spain also reported 4218 confirmed new cases, pushing the total to 195,944.

Health official Fernando Simon said the data gave Spain hope, adding that it showed “the rate of contagion has fallen and that we are on the correct path”.

Sanchez announced on Saturday that he would seek a two-week extension of the state of emergency that is set to run out next week. However, he also said he would begin to ease lockdown measures to allow children to leave their homes from next Monday.

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