Lisbon In Portugal Closes Its Borders At Weekends To Curb Spike In Covid Cases

Lisbon In Portugal Closes It's Borders At Weekends To Curb Spike In Covid Cases. image: Shutterstock

Lisbon In Portugal Closes Its Borders At Weekends To Curb Spike In Covid Cases.

RESIDENTS in the region of Lisbon in Portugal will not be allowed to leave the area at weekends as authorities scramble to control a spike in Covid-19 infections, the government announced on Thursday, June 17.

People living in the 18 municipalities of Lisbon’s metropolitan area will be banned from leaving from 3pm on Friday until 6am on Monday – with those living outside the area not allowed access.

Coronavirus cases in Portugal, which has a population of just 10 million, jumped by 1,350 on Wednesday this week – the biggest increase the country has seen since late February. Most new cases were reported in and around Lisbon, hence the government’s decision for the weekend lockdown. The Lisbon metropolitan area has around 2.8 million inhabitants.

“The government made this decision so the situation in Lisbon does not spread to the rest of the country,” Cabinet Minister Mariana Silva Vieira told a news conference.

The jump in infections comes less than a month after Portugal opened to visitors from the European Union and Britain. However, due to the sudden inclusion of Portugal onto the UK’s amber list, it led to a mass exodus of British holidaymakers rushing to leave the country to avoid quarantine on their return home.

Vieira da Silva said the situation could be worse in Lisbon than in other areas due to the Delta coronavirus variant, which was first identified in India but is rapidly spreading in Britain.

However, foreign tourists visiting Lisbon are exempt from the weekend rule and can still travel to and from the area.

The number of people admitted to hospitals has slightly increased in recent days. Two of Lisbon’s biggest hospitals, Santa Maria and Pulido Valente, opened an additional Covid-19 ward last week.

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Ron Howells

Ron actually started his working career as an Ophthalmic Technician- things changed when, during a band rehearsal, his amplifier blew up and he couldn’t get it fixed so he took a course at Birmingham University and ended up doing a degree course. He built up a chain of electronics stores and sold them as a franchise over 35 years ago. After five years touring the world Ron decided to move to Spain with his wife and son, a place they had visited over the years, and only bought the villa they live in because it has a guitar-shaped swimming pool!. Playing the guitar since the age of 7, he can often be seen, (and heard!) at beach bars and clubs along the length of the coast. He has always been interested in the news and constantly thrives to present his articles in an interesting and engaging way.