WHATSAPP users throughout the Valencia region have warned of a fake message going around concerning a total lockdown to be enforced imminently by the Generalitat.
According to people who received it, the hoax claims that the autonomous government is planning to hold a meeting to discuss the ‘out-of-control’ rate of new COVID-19 infections and the approval of an emergency decree ordering a ‘widespread domestic confinement’.
The unauthorised message goes on to say that the media have received the story ready for publication, and that it has been verified by the Generalitat.
This has forced spokespeople for the regional government to issue an official statement denying the information and describing it as ‘categorically false’.
The panic caused by the shared file is not unfounded, as last Friday the regional president himself went on air to state that the idea of a total lockdown ‘cannot be ruled out’ as there are ‘very hard times ahead’.
However, the measure has not yet been announced or approved.
The authorities once again urge social media users to always check and contrast any official-looking news or announcements with authorised sources, given how easy they are to forge.