A meeting of the cabinet (Council of Ministers). | Moncloa / Borja Puig de la Bellacasa


Spain's health minister, Carolina Darias, says that the government has not ruled out there being an extension to the state of alarm, which is due to end on May 9.

The immediate objective for the ministry is to achieve a nationwide 14-day cumulative incidence of below 50. The figure for March 12 was 130.51 cases per 100,000. Madrid, with 224.84 cases, has the highest incidence among the regions, although the north African city of Melilla is at 430.12.

"We will have to see about an extension, Darias said during a Friday interview with RNE radio. "What we are doing at present is lowering the incidence." Once fifty is reached, "we will then seek a normal scenario of 25".

Everything, she stressed, will depend on the "exemplary behaviour of the citizens". Leaders and the public must "learn from what they have experienced".

Asked about the AstraZeneca vaccine, Darias said that it is safe. "For us, it has maximum reliability." Spain is abiding by the recommendation of the European Medicines Agency, which has urged that the vaccine continues to be administered. The agency has indicated that "there is no causal relationship between thrombotic occurrences and the vaccine itself".