Portugal announces month-long lockdown amid virus surge

at 10:46 am

New Delhi (NVI): After Portugal registered its highest daily surge of COVID-19 deaths and infections on Wednesday, the country’s prime minister, Antonio Costa, has announced a fresh month-long nationwide lockdown.

During the lockdown, which will come into effect on Friday, no one will be allowed to leave their homes for unjustified reasons.

Portugal has witnessed a record-breaking surge in confirmed COVID-19 cases since it eased restrictions for the Christmas holiday.

“A sense of hope prompted by the recent COVID-19 vaccine rollout encouraged people to drop their guard and makes the pandemic even more dangerous,” Costa said during a press conference.

Under the terms of the lockdown, staying at home will be mandatory, including for work, and fines for not complying with rules such as wearing masks in the street will double, the PM added.

Furthermore, schools are to remain open, along with companies providing essential services. Financial help will be provided for businesses that have to close, such as restaurants, cinemas and hair salons.

Portugal, which began a vaccination program in the last week of December, has officially recorded more than 8,200 deaths from the coronavirus.

So far, Portugal gas recorded 5,07,108 confirmed cases of coronavirus, according to Johns Hopkins University data.