Spain's health minister, Carolina Darias. | Olivier Hoslet

It was February 28 when Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez said that Spain's requirement for wearing masks indoors would be lifted "very soon". A week later, he said much the same thing. On Wednesday last week, he avoided giving a date as to when the obligation would be removed.

Over this period, Spain's health minister, Carolina Darias, has said (on more than one occasion) that the mask requirement would be eliminated "sooner rather than later".

In Congress last week, a motion to scrap masks indoors was raised by Vox. The parties of government - Sánchez and Darias's PSOE plus Unidas Podemos - were among those to vote against. A decision will be taken once there is consensus among the scientific community that is endorsed by health professionals. "They are the ones who know. As soon as they tell us, we will do it," said the prime minister.

Another motion, this one from Ciudadanos, got the backing of PSOE - the mask requirement will go when "epidemiological experts agree". Any date for this was up in the air.

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It has since emerged that the director for the Centre for the Coordination of Health Alerts and Emergencies, Fernando Simón, presented a document to public health experts on Thursday which gave a date - April 12 or 13; in time for Easter, therefore.

However, it has been reported that experts present at the meeting were critical of Simón's document. There was ambiguity and there was also an argument, in his report, that mask-wearing would need to be reintroduced if there were high transmission of the virus, but without giving indicators as to this transmission.

It is being suggested, nevertheless, that Carolina Darias would like the masks to go before Easter; in line with the Simón proposal. She wants masks to be eliminated as soon as possible. But this has been said since the end of February.

At an event in Cadiz on Saturday, the minister said that Spain is continuing to monitor cases of Covid in order to "protect the population" and that "we are closer" to the end of masks indoors, but without specifying when.