SALVADOR Illa, Spain’s health minister, is a canny devil. He has been saying for weeks that the vaccine is not obligatory, and he said so again on Monday evening during a television interview. No one is obliged to have the vaccine, he stated, but anyone who declines the offer will be listed on a register, and this register’s information - all in accordance with data protection laws of course - will be shared with other European Union countries.

Why is Spain going to have this register, the minister was asked. He was somewhat evasive as to its purpose. However, he intimated that maybe, possibly, some people might be subject to travel bans within the EU.

So, this is the purpose of the register. Is it not?

“It seems to me that we all see that the way to defeat the virus is to vaccinate all of us.”

The problem with this, according to a recent poll, is that only 40.5% of Spaniards wish to be vaccinated asap; 28% are against being vaccinated immediately.

If, however, any of these 28% wish to take a summer holiday in, for example, Germany (and there may be some), they may think twice about the immediacy of vaccination or about having the vaccine at all.

Otherwise, they could arrive at a German airport and find that they are “verboten”.

Clever, eh? But the 28% may decide to switch holiday arrangements and head for the UK. Brexit: there are unforeseen benefits (for 28% of Spaniards anyway).

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