The Uruguayan government has revoked the temporary residence permit of an Argentine citizen, effectively ordering his expulsion from the country, after police raided an illegal party attended by more than 500 people at a private home in Maldonado department.
Uruguay’s Interior Ministry said that the revocation of residence had been ordered after police shut down a party in Sauce de Portezuelo, Maldonado, around 15 kilometres from Punta del Este, at dawntime Saturday morning.
Local press outlets on Monday identified the expelled individual as 22-year-old Adriano Sessa, son of Argentine actress Mónica Gonzaga. The star later defended her offspring, saying that the home had been “invaded” after its location had “gone viral,” while expressly denying that a “clandestine party” had been organised.
Officials, however, seem unmoved by those claims.In a statement, the portfolio said the Sessa’s expulsion had been ordered “for “reasons of public order,” and because the individual had “violated rules that expressly prohibit gatherings” due to the coronavirus pandemic.
According to reports, at least 560 people attended the event, which comes as Uruguay faces a new surge in Covid-19 infections. More than 1,500 new cases were recorded in just the past week, with concerns over new coronavirus strains escalating.
Uruguay’s El País newspaper said that Interior Minister Jorge Larrañaga was overseeing the matter personally and that he considered it an “exemplary measure” to ensure that such events do not become a common occurrence.
Ministry sources had previously told the newspaper that Sessa’s behaviour "denatures the residence benefit granted by the national authorities," as a result of the individual failing to comply with Law 19.932 that prohibits large gatherings due to their health risk.
For most of the past year, Uruguay was something of a model for Latin America, given its low case rate and fatalities. As of Tuesday, just over 81,000 infections and 792 deaths had been recorded in the country of 3.4 million.
However, since November, caseloads are up with higher occupation in intensive care units (ICUs). On Monday, the Public Health Ministry reported that the Brazilian P.1 strain of Covid-19, which according to preliminary studies is more contagious, has been found in seven regions in the country.
President Luis Lacalle Pou summoned a special council of ministers meeting on Tuesday, at which officials are expected to discuss new measures in order to reduce infection rates.