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News from afpop - Friday 29th January 2021 update

Michael Reeve - 29-01-2021

News from afpop - Friday 29th January 2021 update

Included in this briefing: 1. President of the Republic comments 2. State of Emergency extended 3. Additional restrictions 4. The islands 5. Covid states across Portugal

I hope you are all well and keeping safe. As always if English or German are not your first language and you need clarification on any of the information included in this mailing, please contact the afpop office to ask for assistance. 
 
As we continue through this pandemic it seems my briefings to you all are becoming more frequent. Of course that is why we are here, to help Members understand what is happening and what their rights and obligations are. Please continue to stay safe, follow the guidelines and instructions of the government and as always, if you have specific questions about your particular circumstances, please contact the office and we will do our best to help you find the answers. Please bear in mind that we are also now working under these guidelines, so if there is a delay in replying to you, I ask that you allow for this when you contact us. Do contact us though, we might be a little slower to respond sometimes – particularly if you telephone, but we will respond.
 
President of the Republic’s address to the country:
In his broadcast to the nation last evening, the recently re-elected President of the Republic, Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa said, “We are living through the most difficult period of the pandemic that has lasted for 11 months. We have to be more restrictive, more rigorous, more imperative in complying with the restrictions. The number of infected people increases daily and this puts Portugal at the top of the list of countries with the highest number of cases/deaths. It is important that people realise that they should only go out for what is absolutely necessary.”
 
He stressed that the situation that Portugal is experiencing "is really the worst" since the beginning of this pandemic and that "it is not worth hiding reality, pretending or deceiving.
Whatever we do, together and with the Portuguese public authorities, until March, will determine what spring, summer and who knows, autumn will be like. Everything will be decided in these next weeks, until March, inclusive".
 
State of Emergency extended:
The State of Emergency has now been extended until 23:59 on 14th February, and schools will begin again on 8th February, but only through on-line lessons. All the regulations in place, including travel between council areas at weekends and the closure of all but essential businesses remain in force, with some additional restrictions intended to stop the spread of the virus between countries. The rules can be found in the previous briefings from the last two weeks, which are also published on the afpop website Home page www.afpop.com 
 
Please remember, the government has authorised the immediate collections of fines where there is disregard for the restrictions in force.
 
Additional restrictions – Travel:
Essentially the borders are closed except for certain exceptional circumstance. The international transport of goods, cargo and mail may continue, humanitarian or medical emergency personnel, service personnel, and those carrying out professional activities with the correct documentation. Portuguese citizens who reside in other countries may cross the border and people may reunite with their spouse or family members in the first degree. Portuguese citizens or residents with right to live in Portugal may return to Portugal and travel to the autonomous regions of the Azores and Madeira are also allowed. Foreign citizens who are not residents in Portugal may leave to return to their country of residence.
 
Road, rail and river travel between Portugal and Spain are prohibited except to allow for the exceptions stated above. 
 
When the epidemiological situation justifies it, flights may be suspended to other countries as determined by the government. They may also introduce the requirement for mandatory confinement for anyone entering Portugal by air.
 
As previously mentioned, between 29 January and 14 February, as determined by the Portuguese government flights to/from Brazil and the United Kingdom are suspended. Until 1 March, the Belgian government has forbidden access for anyone whose primary residence is not Belgium and Germany has now also blocked flights from Portugal.
 
The islands: The links below will take you to the Covid pages for the islands.
 
Madeira: https://www.madeira.gov.pt/Covid19/DecisoesExcecionaisCovid19
 
Azores: https://portal.azores.gov.pt/en/web/comunicacao/news-detail?id=2621765
 
Covid across Portugal: 
In this link you can see the current infection situation in Portugal. You can select the latest report each time it is updated by the government.
 

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