July 13, 2024

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A procession for rain in drought-stricken Spain

A procession for rain in drought-stricken Spain

(Jaén) In the face of a historic drought hitting Spain, Jaén parishioners in the parched south of the country organized a procession on Monday to pray for rain. El Abuelo (grandfather), an ancient statue of Christ carrying the cross.

Under the afternoon sun, thousands of residents flocked to the streets of this city in the interior of Andalusia to witness it. El Abuelo It has not called for rain since March 1949.

“We are in the grip of a continuous drought and this procession aims to ask the Lord to help us and save us,” the main brother of the fraternity explained to AFP Ricardo Cobos. El Abuelo “.

“We are very dependent on olive trees and olive oil, and when there is no water in the land it is an economic disaster,” he adds.

Spain, which exports much of its agricultural produce to the rest of Europe, has been hit by a devastating drought that worries farmers and officials.

According to Coke, the main farmers’ union, 60% of Spain’s farmland is currently “asphyxiating” due to lack of rain. And the country’s reservoirs are only 50.1% full of their capacity, or 24.8% in the Guadalquivir basin in Andalusia.

Spain experienced an exceptionally early heatwave last week, with temperatures exceeding 37°C in some places.

The Spanish government last Tuesday asked the European Commission to activate the Common Agricultural Policy’s “emergency reserve” to help its farmers.

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Along with this demand, the Spanish government has announced a series of tax increases for its farmers, including a 25% reduction in income tax, which should benefit 800,000 professionals.

In John, we scan the sky. “I came here to see the Lord and I believe he will give us water,” says Antonia Contreras from a nearby town who follows the procession.