DESPITE the encouraging decline in the number of Covid cases in the Balearics, much of the region, in particular Mallorca, is having to live with some of the toughest restrictions in Spain.

And, the latest mask wearing debacle has sparked a public debate over whether civil liberties are starting to be infringed by regional and central governments.

On the whole, the Mallorcan population has been extremely obedient and complied with all of the pandemic restrictions which, for the time being can continue to be rolled out until the state of alarm in Spain comes to an end on May 12, although an extension could be pushed for depending on the medical data.

The word from the top is that Madrid and its medical advisors are worried about the arrival of a fourth wave, hence possible new and further restrictions, such as mask on the beach and around swimming pools.

Although, I honestly doubt this is going to stick judging by the furious response from regional governments across the country, in particular holiday destinations.

After over a year in various stages of lockdowns with some draconian restrictions, if the authorities are not careful, they may push the general public’s patience a little too far, not to mention damaging the country’s image overseas.

The latest mask U-turn was another embarrassment for Spain overseas and the country’s tourist industry can’t afford any more.