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The Portuguese are more flexible

Faced with the recent explosion of cases of covid-19, Portugal has chosen to tighten the screw a little more in order to better fight against the virus.

Faced with the recent explosion of cases of covid-19, Portugal has chosen to tighten the screw a little more in order to better fight against the virus.

(AFP) – While France decided on Thursday to advance the curfew to 6 p.m. for the entire territory, Portugal for its part made a more radical choice. Its ten million inhabitants thus entered a second period of general confinement on Friday to stem the covid-19 epidemic.

The impact of the new restrictions is however less visible than those of last spring, note AFP journalists. If the streets of central Lisbon are less crowded than usual, many residents have left their homes, including dropping their children off in schools which, this time, have not been closed. “There are fewer people in the street, but look, the buses are full! The metro was also full this morning, ”testified Maria Andrade, a 71-year-old woman who has decided to open her little restaurant even though she can only do take-out.

Many exceptions

“Frankly, for me there is no confinement, I do not realize it,” said Eduardo Carinho, newspaper seller. “What is really closed are shops and restaurants, because otherwise everything else works,” he told AFP TV. Faced with an upsurge in the number of new cases of covid-19 detected every day, and increasing pressure on the country’s hospitals, the Portuguese government resolved on Wednesday to impose a new “general duty of home confinement”.

The new measures, which will remain in effect for at least a month, include the closure of non-essential businesses, cafes and restaurants, or the obligation to switch to telework when possible. These restrictions nevertheless provide for many exceptions which allow, in particular, the opening of courts, churches or florists.

“I fear that these measures will not have much effect,” worried Maria Teresa Gomes, a retiree who was coming out of a consultation at the hospital and who crossed the center of the capital on foot to return home. she. “If containment fails, the price will be very high”, for his part warned in his editorial the director of the benchmark newspaper Publico, Manuel Carvalho, calling on the Portuguese to take the new measures “very seriously”.


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