The UK Foreign Office (FCO) has advised against all but essential travel to regions of Spain designated as “areas of community transmission of coronavirus”.

These include Madrid and La Rioja in northern Spain, as well as the municipalities of La Bastida and Vitoria in the Basque Country and Miranda de Ebro in the northeast.

The FCO issued the advice after the Spanish Ministry of Health designated these as areas of community transmission of Covid-19.

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Authorities in the affected regions, which also include Catalonia, have introduced extraordinary measures including the temporary closure of schools, public sports centres, theatres and day care centres for the elderly.

All national museums in Madrid have been closed until further notice and sporting events and local festivals have been postponed.

The FCO advises those intending to travel to Spain to consult their airline or tour operator. Spanish airports remain open for now.

The Spanish government has suspended all incoming flights from Italy until March 25 and asked people to avoid unnecessary travel.

Events involving more than 1,000 people are prohibited. Nurseries, schools and universities are closed.