Portuguese president calls for “national effort” to avoid setbacks in fighting COVID-19

Portuguese President Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa on Monday called for “a national effort by all to avoid setbacks” at the beginning of the second phase of the country’s de-confinement program.

The head of state visited a school in Lisbon to celebrate the return of classes for all students in Portugal, saying that it was a “historic day.”

In addition to schools, shops with up to 200 square meters, restaurants with open-air service, fairs and markets without food, museums, monuments, palaces, art galleries, and the like are allowed to reopen to the public as of Monday.

“We are here, symbolically, to say that this is a joint effort, believing that it is an opening for the future,” but that it will only be possible with “respect for public health rules daily and permanently,” said the president.

“If it goes well when we get to May and then June, we will have already passed what is the de-confinement program,” he said.

As the world is struggling to contain the pandemic, vaccination is underway in some countries with the already-authorized coronavirus vaccines.