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Government rectifies and says it will allow children to go out for walks from next week

A boy walks his dog near a closed playground in Bilbao.
A boy walks his dog near a closed playground in Bilbao. / EFE
  • The change to the planned new decree has come just hours after saying that youngsters up to 14 would only be allowed to accompany an adult to the shops

The government has U-turned on the details of its draft decree announced on Tuesday afternoon stipulating that children would be able to leave their homes from 27 April to accompany an adult, but only to the supermarket or the pharmacy.

Health minister Salvador Illa rectified the information just hours later, stating that children up to the age of 14 would be able to go out for walks with a parent or carer.

The government spokesperson, María Jesús Montero, had said earlier that the reason for an adult and child leaving their house from next week would have to be one that is already permitted under lockdown restrictions.

This in theory allowed visits to the supermarket, bank or pharmacy, but not a trip out purely for a walk.

"Going for a walk is going for a walk," said the minister Illa on Tuesday evening, making it clear that a visit to the shops would no longer be a condition.

The minister gave no further details on Tuesday evening as to the conditions under which children will be able to be taken out for walks.

The rectification came after experts, the opposition and members of the public around the country expressed their surprise and anger, claiming that children need to go out in the fresh air, not to a supermarket.

The new decree, which will extend the state of alarm for two more weeks until 9 May, was due to be debated in Congreso on Wednesday.