COVID-19: Portugal announces new restrictions including curfew in 45 areas amid rising coronavirus cases | World News
Portugal has announced an 11pm curfew in 45 municipalities, including Porto and Lisbon, amid a rise in COVID cases.
The Portuguese government has ruled people will not be allowed in public spaces and should remain in their own homes between 11pm and 5am in those areas deemed “very high” or “high” risk.
The municipalities, the country’s equivalent to local council areas, affected by the new restrictions will also see restaurants and cafes close at 10.30pm during the week and 3.30pm at the weekend and bank holidays.
Other restrictions include:
- A 10.30pm closing time for cultural shows.
- A limit on the number of people allowed per table in cafes and restaurants. In very high-risk areas, four people can sit together inside and six outside. In those areas deemed high risk, six people can be seated on a table indoors and 10 outside.
- Shops to close at 9pm
- 25% venue capacity for weddings and baptisms in very high-risk areas and a 50% capacity for high-risk areas.
The government also opted to maintain a restriction on travel to and from Lisbon Metropolitan Area (AML) between 3pm on 2 July and 6am on 5 July for those who do not have a certificate showing they have been vaccinated, recovered from COVID-19 or received a negative test.
There were only three areas classed as very high risk a week ago but now 19 have been put in the category including Lisbon, Albufeira, Sintra, Cascais and Sobral de Monte Agraco.
Porto has been placed in the high-risk category, along with 25 other areas such as Lagoa, Faro and Palmela – there were 14 a week ago.
Speaking at a news conference on Thursday, minister of state and presidency, Mariana Vieira da Silva said: “We have not met the conditions to consider the pandemic under control and I urge that you all abide by the rules and avoid risky behaviour.”
She added the “situation has again worsened in the last week” with mainland Portugal recording an R-number of 1.15.
“The country is in a situation where it is necessary to maintain the rules of social distancing, avoid gatherings, use masks and maintain hygiene and sanitizing standards,” she said.
The minister added “most of mainland Portugal still has incidence rates below 120, but the situation has deteriorated in the Lisbon Metropolitan Area, Alentejo, and the Algarve, as well as other councils in other regions with incidence rates above 120, when compared to the last few weeks”.
There has also been a significant rise in the number of councils under alert.
“They are now 21, which will be restricted as of next week if the situation remains unaltered,” she said.
The country has recorded 882,006 COVID cases in total and 17,101 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins University data.
Portugal recently introduced new rules requiring British visitors who are not fully vaccinated to quarantine for 14 days on arrival.
The popular holiday destination was taken off the UK’s green travel list last month over concerns about a rise in cases and is currently on the amber list, meaning those who travel there are required to isolate for 10 days when they arrive back in Britain.