Pensioners come under attack during coronavirus evacuation in Spain

Pensioners on coronavirus evacuation buses are pelted with ROCKS in Spain after locals ambush them to stop them arriving from area affected by the virus

  • A Civil Guard convoy moved 28 people from a virus-hit care home to a new town  
  • The ambulances received a hostile reception from youths who hurled stones
  • Spanish police had to intervene after 50 people surrounded patients’ new home 
  • Coronavirus symptoms: what are they and should you see a doctor?

Elderly coronavirus patients came under attack from angry youths who threw stones at a fleet of ambulances moving them to a new home in Spain.  

The Civil Guard convoy was ambushed when it arrived in the town of La Linea de la Concepcion near Gibraltar, bringing 28 patients to a new care home. 

Angry locals obstructed the convoy and stoned the vehicles before throwing Molotov cocktails at police who were guarding the home.  

The hostile reception was in stark contrast to the cheers and applause which had greeted the convoy when it evacuated the sick patients from the town of Alcala del Valle, after a virus outbreak at their previous care home.  

A gang of people, many of them wearing masks and hoods, assembled in the town of La Linea de la Concepcion to confront an ambulance convoy bringing elderly residents to their town

The Civil Guard convoy was ambushed when it arrived in the town of La Linea de la Concepcion near Gibraltar, bringing 28 patients to a new care home

Two men were arrested in La Linea de la Concepcion after parking a car across the road in a bid to stop the pensioners moving in, the Spanish government said. 

Around 50 youths then surrounded their new residence, which is called Tiempo Libre or Free Time. 

The locals also appeared to be breaching coronavirus lockdown rules which ban people from leaving their homes unnecessarily. 

Local reports said the men involved had been sharing WhatsApp messages before the attacks in which they had threatened to set up barricades with burning tyres.   

A National Police spokesman said: ‘Several youths gathered at the entrance to the town and threw stones at the ambulances as well as leaving a vehicle across the road to try to prevent it reaching its destination.

‘Officers arrested the two occupants of the vehicle, two men aged 32 and 35.

‘Once the elderly people were taken into the home, police had to establish a security cordon around the residence as around 50 people outside threatened to cause problems.

‘Other acts of vandalism occurred later on in the town.

‘Several officers were identifying two individuals when an object was thrown from the roof of a nearby building which exploded as it hit the ground but missed the police.

‘Thirty minutes later there was a repeat of the incident in the same place. The objects were taken away to be analysed.’

La Linea’s mayor Juan Franco has condemned the attacks, saying of the culprits: ‘They are a little group of undesirables and idiots who don’t represent our town.’ 

A convoy of ambulances and Civil Guard vehicles drives along a narrow street in the town of Alcala del Valle, where dozens of pensioners were evacuated from a care home

The pensioners had been moved from the care home in Alcala del Valle after at least 38 people tested positive for coronavirus and three died. 

The regional government in Andalusia ordered them out of the Dolores Ibarruri care home and the Civil Guard convoy took them out of the town on Tuesday.  

Local residents tried to lift the pensioners’ spirits as they left the town, sending them good wishes from their balconies as the convoy drove past.  

One onlooker shouted: ‘Come on, you are going to be fine, they are going to take very good care of you, don’t worry, you will be back very soon!’ 

Although there was applause for the pensioners as they left, some relatives say they were not informed about the transfer and fear their relatives will not get the correct medication. 

‘They have not allowed him to take his clothes or his personal belongings. We do not know who will attend to them or if they know what medication our elders take,’ the nephew of one 99-year-old evacuee told El Mundo. 

‘The relatives have not been informed at any time, nor the provisional director of the residence, who in the last few hours had managed to gather material and personnel to guarantee the operation of the centre.’ 

Reports say that 38 out of 41 residents have tested positive, along with 19 of the 33 workers in the home. Three people have reportedly died.

Juan Franco, the mayor of the town, had been working in the care home with four councillors after the staff fell ill.  

Residents of the town applaud from their balconies in a show of support for the elderly care home residents as they were taken to another town

A Spanish army officer waves at people in a nursing home, keeping their distance behind a window 

Earlier this week, Spain’s defence minister revealed that some elderly residents had been found dead or abandoned at some care homes. 

Spanish soldiers made the grim discoveries after they were called in  to disinfect the nursing homes. 

Some elderly residents had apparently been found dead under the same roof as relatives who were still alive.   

Spain now has the world’s second-deadliest outbreak, after its death toll surged past China’s yesterday. 

Spanish officials reported 655 new deaths in their latest update today, taking the total from 3,434 to 4,089. 

The figure is now well above the 3,287 people who have died in mainland China, where the outbreak began in late 2019. 

Italy has the world’s highest death toll, with 7,503. 

Spain’s total infection count increased by 8,578, taking the total from 47,610 to 56,188.  

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