ANDALUCIANS will NOT be allowed to travel to meet ‘very close friends’ this Christmas. 

The Junta announced last week that it will only allow travel for ‘family reunions’ over the festive period (December 23 to January 6), with a maximum of 10 people, including children. 

It comes after the central Government said it will allow for travel between the regions over Christmas but only for people to ‘visit family or close friends (‘allegados’)’. 

But Andalucia president Juanma Moreno said the term ‘allegado’ (loved one or close friend) was ‘far too ambiguous’ and could cause an ‘onslaught of consequences in the spread of the pandemic.’

The Partido Popular leader said people being allowed to travel to meet friends would be a ‘breeding ground’ for a dreaded third wave, something the region is trying to avoid ‘at all costs.’ 

At an event last week, Moreno said his government would ‘scrupulously’ define who is a ‘close friend’ or even eliminate the term from its coronavirus decree. 

Later, regional health minister Jesus Aguirre confirmed: “We do not share the concept of relatives held by Health Minister Salvador Illa: we will only allow for family reunions.”

But Andalucia will play along with the other measures allowed for by Madrid, including a 1:30am curfew on December 24, 25, 31 and January 1.

This week it is also expected to announce when it will expand the closing hours of shops and bars and restaurants. 

“The will of the Andalucian government is to extend these hours as much possible, but to get the balance right, taking into account the advice of the expert committee,” said Moreno. 

The current measures are not expected to be lifted until December 12, with an announcement on any updates to be made on December 10. 

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