The Gran Canarian pride festival attended by 80,000 from Britain and across Europe is being investigated after being linked to numerous monkeypox cases in Madrid, Italy and Tenerife.
Held between May 5 and May 15, Maspalomas Pride attracts visitors from across the continent.
It was attended by people who have tested positive for the monekypox virus afterwards, with public health services from the Canary Islands now investigating the any links between the cases and the LGBT+ celebrations.
There are two suspected cases in men in the Canary Islands, one with links to the LGBT+ festival.
There is no conclusive evidence that the latest outbreak is being sexually transmitted, rather than simply being passed between people who were in close proximity to each other, experts said.
As such gay men are not believed to be more likely to contract the disease, however are potentially more likely to have been exposed to it due to the known incidences being at events and locations that attracted large numbers of people from across the LGBT+ community.
The development came after it emerged Spanish authorities are also investigating confirmed cases of monkeypox that have been linked to a ‘sauna’ – which in Spain is used to describe establishments popular with gay men looking for sex rather than just a bathhouse.
A spokesperson for the department confirmed that one of the Italian men who has the virus was in the Canary Islands, but denied knowing if the man from Tenerife had travelled there, according to a report from the Spanish news website.
A second Italian man who was also in the Canary Islands contracted the virus. All three Italian men with the virus are unknown to each other.
Earlier today, a top British doctor has predicted a ‘significant rise’ in monkeypox cases in the UK in the next few weeks, as the country recorded 20 cases — and more than 100 found in Europe.
The disease, which was first found in monkeys, can be transmitted from person to person through close physical contact – as well as sexual intercourse – and is caused by the monkeypox virus.