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If the sentimental relationships at a distance are no longer easy in themselves, everything is liable to get worse: sentimental relationships at a distance in times of coronavirus. Thousands of people find themselves stranded in a situation that they consider as desperate as it is unfair. His love lives in another country and, due to the closing of borders due to the pandemic, they have not been seen for months, in the worst cases, for almost a year. Specifically, in Spain there are 2,990 applications submitted, according to government sources, from foreigners who wish to come to see their partner.

Today, Spain immersed in strong restrictions due to covid-19, it is giving permission to enter the country to people who prove that they are married, are a common-law couple or have lived together for a year under the same roof with a Spanish citizen. But there are many couples who, not represented by any of these three assumptions, say they are hitting a wall every time they go to Spanish embassies and consulates around the world to obtain authorization to travel. They have become strong in social networks and under the hastag #LoveisnotTourism (Love is not tourism) they ask the Government flexibility, understanding and comparison with the rest of binational couples.

How can they credit Laura, 28-year-old Spanish, Y Dany, Israeli 30, who have been living under the same roof for a year if they met by playing online a year before the pandemic began. “It is a ridiculous requirement because it is practically impossible to fulfill in cases like ours,” explains Laura, in a telephone call from Granada. Is Spanish graphic designer and the Israeli electrical engineer they met in person for the first time in Berlin and subsequently and alternately, they have seen each other for periods of one month in Israel and Spain. The next January It will be a year since they last saw each other. “In the video calls we both ended up crying, although I have to say that our relationship has strengthened” explains Laura, and then explains that hair falls out Y lose weight.

“Emotionally comparable”

“They are couples emotionally comparable to a marriage or a domestic partnership.” They are words of the Secretary of State for Global Spain, Manuel Muniz, when referring to couples affected by these restrictions in an interview at the Manuel Broseta Meeting Club, in Valencia. Muniz assured that instructions are being given to the consulates not to request the certificate of coexistence for one year to grant authorization to these “deep long-term couples.” The official data provided by the Secretary of State are as follows: of the 2,990 applications submitted, 1,514 have been approved, 597 denied (20%) and 621 are pending. For those affected, a reasonable solution would be to present an affidavit, a negative PCR test and a round trip ticket.

But these guidelines from the Secretary of State are not translated into the day-to-day life of the consulates. Andrés Lucas, Spanish 33 years old, and her partner, Russian Karina Antonova, 31-year-old lawyerThey hope to see each other at Christmas to celebrate their second year of dating. They met in Barcelona at the 2019 entrance celebrations and, since then, they have seen each other for periods of 10 days in up to six countries. “There is a lot of uncoordination and the criteria that are being applied are very subjective,” Andrés denounces.

They have it worse, if possible, Indira Durán, from Seville (27 years old) and his partner, a peruvian woman of 24 of which it does not give the identity to preserve anonymity since homosexual relations are not recognized in Peru.

Indira He is 27 years old and, like his Peruvian partner of 24, is a law student. The time difference does not help, quite the opposite, to make video conferences. “I sleep very little because it is the only way to talk to her,” he explains, adding: “The situation is affecting me a lot both emotionally and psychologically.”

Julian Manzano, 24-year-old from Seville, and Alina Gribova, a 23-year-old Muscovite, met in Spain in a volunteer program at an archaeological restoration. Julián explains that, at the beginning of the pandemic, it was easy to be understanding but as the months go by “it becomes more difficult to bear the situation.” “There have been tense moments, of anger, that one of the two does not want to talk … but our relationship is still strong”, Andrés is proud, knowing that other courtships have not supported the challenge.

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