Spain could quarantine UK arrivals if British government maintains current restrictions

Spain could quarantine UK arrivals if British government maintains current restrictions
  • Foreign Minister Arancha González Laya has stressed that there has to be reciprocity in arrangements when travel between the two countries is allowed from Sunday

Spain could impose a quarantine on arrivals from the UK from next week if the British government maintains similar measures to stop the spread of the coronavirus, according to Foreign Minister Arancha González Laya in an interview on the BBC's Hardtalk programme.

"We will be looking at what the UK does and we will be in dialogue with the UK to decide whether or not we should introduce reciprocity, as they have different measures from the rest of the EU," she said.

On 8 June, the British government imposed a 14-day quarantine on travellers arriving in the country from any international destination but Chancellor Rishi Sunak said on Sunday that the 14-day quarantine was being reviewed and that the authorities were looking at "all options", including opening air bridges with other countries.

González Laya described the current situation as "fluid" and insisted that both parties will remain in contact to make decisions in accordance with the "health situation", which, she said, is now "a little better in Spain than in the United Kingdom".

The Spanish government had planned to reopen its country's borders on 1 July but brought this decision forward by ten days to receive tourists from the EU and the Schengen area. Portugal, at the request of the Portuguese government, will keep its land border with Spain closed until 1 July.

This was later confirmed to include the UK. The British Embassy in Madrid tweeted on Monday: "You may have seen the announcement this weekend that Spain will open its borders with some countries from 21 June. The Spanish government has confirmed to us that the UK is included within the group of countries to whom these border relaxations will apply."

Madrid has also decided that it will reopen its borders to third countries outside the Schengen area from 1 July if their epidemiological situation is similar to or better than in the EU, there is reciprocity with regard to travel and they accept certain health conditions.