Portugal will have something big to celebrate on May 1 (in addition to the International Worker’s Day, of course): President Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa told the country on Tuesday that he will not renew the country’s state of emergency. We’re now looking at a state of calamity (don’t freak out, it’s not as strict!).
The current state of emergency is the 15th state imposed so far, and it ends at 23:59 on Friday, April 30.
Marcelo said his decision was prompted by the drop in the number of COVID-related deaths and hospitalizations as well as the progress of the country’s vaccination drive, according to Público.
The lower-risk state of calamity means masks are still obligatory, as is social distancing.
Marcelo warned that all current measures must be maintained and that we may go back to another state of emergency if the numbers merit it, Público reports.
But as per Portugal’s “deconfinement” plan put into place earlier, more restrictions are being lifted as of May 3: restaurants will no longer have limits on hours of operation, and a maximum of six people will be able to dine at the same table — 10 if it’s outside. All sports activities can resume, as well as major events, both inside and outside. So it may be a rather spectacular, if socially-distanced, summer, oxalá.
Direção-Geral da Saúde (DGS – Directorate-General for Health) reported Tuesday that there were 346 people hospitalized, 86 of them in intensive care over the preceding 24 hours. There were also five deaths and 353 new cases. In all, Portugal has administered almost 3 million vaccines thus far, and around 800,000 people have received both doses and are fully vaccinated, according to DGS.