MOST of the Murcia region’s municipalities are to close their borders due to the steep rise in COVID-19 cases.

COVID-19 Monitoring Committee spokesman Jaime Perez, said: ”These are extreme measures because the capacity of hospitals to care for patients is at stake.”

The move, which also sees the closure of hospitality businesses in 36 municipalities, will take effect from tomorrow(January 12).

The only exception for the hospitality trade is for takeaway and home delivery services.

The whole of Murcia is going into Phase Two measures as Jaime Perez described the situation as getting close to an ’emergency’.

Nine municipalities will still have their borders open, with bars and restaurants able to operate terrace service only at 75% capacity.

The areas are Beniel, Alhama de Murcia, Totana, Puerto Lumbreras, Mazarron, Librilla, Calasparra, Aledo and Ojos.

Jaime Perez had no hesitation in blaming virus rises on social gatherings over Christmas and the New Year:

“The position was largely foreseeable due to the relaxation of health safety measures.”

“COVID-19 infections are rocketing amongst people aged between 17 and 40, and 76% of the outbreaks in Murcia are down to social and family situations.”

 “At this time we must avoid all social interaction, especially anything that involves removing a mask,” he added.

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