Global hotspot Portugal’s Covid cases fall for first time in nearly a month

Lisbon, Feb 2 (efe-epa).- Portugal, which is under severe nationwide lockdown restrictions amid a third and severely damaging wave of the Covid-19 pandemic, reported 5,540 new infections on Tuesday.

It is the lowest figure in nearly a month, which has seen the country become the worst affected in the world by the coronavirus.

The resurgence has been blamed on rules on social gatherings being loosened over the Christmas period, as well as the new highly contagious British variant of the virus.

In an attempt to regain control of the contagion, border checks have been stepped up, including mandatory PCR tests for people driving to and from Spain. Drivers must pay 35 euros for the test, with results available within 20 minutes.

At the border with Spain, Portugal’s Foreigners and Borders Service counted 17,119 citizens and 12,637 vehicles in the first 48 hours since border controls were reinstated on Sunday. EFE-EPA


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