Spain to lift outdoor mask requirement from June 26: PM

Barcelona, Spain Updated: Jun 18, 2021, 11:34 PM(IST)

Spain's Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez Photograph:( AFP )

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The lifting is to be approved at a special cabinet meeting

Spain will lift the legal requirement to wear a mask outdoors from June 26, Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez said on Friday. 

"This will be the last weekend when we wear masks outdoors because next June 26 we won't have to wear masks in outdoor public spaces," he said.

The lifting is to be approved at a special cabinet meeting on Thursday, Sanchez said on a visit to Barcelona. 

Also read | Spain opens borders to vaccinated travellers as tourists begin arriving

"In the coming days, our streets and our faces will regain their normal appearance," he said, hailing it as a "very important decision from a social point of view". 

"We will start to enjoy life in the street without wearing a mask."

Masks first became obligatory on public transport in early May 2020 in a bid to reduce COVID-19 infections, and within weeks were made compulsory in the street for anyone aged six and above. 

Anyone violating the rules has faced a fine.

Also read | Spain celebrates end of lockdown, expert warns pandemic isn't over

Earlier this year, Spain briefly introduced a law making masks obligatory at all times on the beach but after a backlash it was amended, meaning they weren't necessary while sunbathing or swimming if social distancing was respected.

Spain has so far lost over 80,000 lives to the virus and counted more than 3.7 million cases. 

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