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Hundreds take to the streets demanding Spanish PM resign over poor handling of coronavirus

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On Thursday, demonstrators carrying Spain’s national flag walked for more than an hour on Calle Larios, in Malaga, chanting slogans against the government. Spain allowed the protest to continue as they ease lockdown restrictions.

Signs calling for Mr Sanchez and his entire government to resign were the most popular slogans heard throughout the demonstration.

Francisca Torres, who attended the protest with friends, told ABCandalucia: “It is a shame the situation to which this government has led us.

“They have not managed this crisis properly.”

The peaceful protest saw numerous members of the National Police and a group of them in the Plaza de la Constitución receiving a huge ovation from participants.

José Gutierrez said: “I work in the hospitality industry and the situation is unbearable, especially here in Malaga, where tourism is key.”

Malaga isn’t the only region in Spain that has seen anti-government protests after demonstrators convened in Madrid earlier this week and other Spanish cities to protest the government’s handling of COVID-19.

The protestors also demanded the resignation of Mr Sánchez, with some claiming the country has turned into a dictatorship.

The demonstrators objected to the government’s growing powers to tackle the coronavirus, which they claim has resulted in a “government by decree”.

At 9pm each night protestors have taken to banging pots and pans to signal their disapproval of the lockdown and the Socialist-led government that imposed it.

The protests have also spilt out into the streets of many Spanish cities, including Madrid, Galapagar and Valencia.

The police have steadily increased their presence to prevent confrontations and stop the protestors from blocking streets – as they did in the first few days of the demonstrations.

Protestors also started targeting the homes of government ministers, such as Pablo Iglesias, the government’s second Vice President, and the country’s transport minister José Luis Ábalos.

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Much of Spain is now in Phase One, which allows some degree of social interaction and the reopening of some businesses, but Madrid still remains in Phase Zero – and has had few restrictions eased.

Mr Sanchez has also won the vote to extend lockdown until June 7 according to local Spanish media.

“The alarm state and the de-escalation plan did work. It will not last a day longer than necessary,” said Mr Sánchez.

“No one has the right to waste what we have achieved among all.”

Minister Adriana Lastra added: “We still have many uncertainties, but also many certainties.

“We know that without our responsibility, all that sacrifice will not be enough.

“We have already seen outbreaks in some territories.”

The two-week lockdown extension will run until June 7.

This week, Spain’s daily death toll fell to 48, marking the first time it has dipped below 50 since March.

The overall death toll was 27,940 while the number of confirmed cases rose by 482 to a total of 233,037, the ministry said.

Additional reporting by Maria Ortega

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