The Interterritorial Council agrees on travel restrictions over Easter Week

Tomorrow it will be decided whether to authorise the administration of AstraZeneca's vaccine to people over 55 years of age

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The Minister of Health, Carolina Darias, in an archive image

BarcelonaThe Minister of Health, Carolina Darias, has announced that the Interterritorial Council has agreed this afternoon to maintain a ban on travelling between regions over the upcoming bank holidays. The restrictions will be in place between 17 and 21 March (19 March is a holiday in some parts of Spain) and between 26 March and 9 April, for Easter. In addition, a curfew will be in force between 11 pm and 6 am. "These are minimum measures," said Darias, who has pointed out that if any community believes that it has to implement tougher measures it can do so. In fact, among other restrictions, the Catalan Health Department has already confirmed to ARA that the curfew in Catalonia will start at the same time as now, at 10 pm. The Balearic and Canary Islands will be exempt from this restrictions and will be able to receive tourists -albeit not from Spain- who have obtained a negative PCR result.

Darias has also said that tomorrow morning the council of Public Health will meet and decide on whether to authorise the AstraZeneca vaccine to be administered to over-55s, as requested by the Catalan health authorities.

Despite the fact that the perimeter confinement is mandatory for autonomous communities, the Community of Madrid - in the midst of a political crisis - is defying the Spanish government and has threatened not to close over the holidays. The region's Minister of Health, Enrique Ruiz Escudero, has assured that the decree of state of alarm gives power to regional governments to impose the measures they deem necessary. "Our position has been made very clear. We will not close down," said Escudero. According to the Madrid councillor, it is a "technical" and not a "political" decision. Madrid claims that the population density in the Community is much higher than in the rest of the Autonomous Communities, a fact that, according to Escudero, contributes to the spread of the coronavirus. Even so, Darias has warned that by law and de facto, since the agreement will be published in the BOE and the rest of the communities will respect it, Madrid will also be closed.