LISBON, Portugal — Portugal’s government is bringing back restrictions in some parts of the Lisbon metropolitan area as authorities struggle to break the chain of coronavirus transmission in towns around the capital.
Prime Minister Antonio Costa said after a four-hour meeting with municipal officials Monday that the COVID-19 hot spots are in 15 parishes.
He said that from midnight, a 10-person limit on gatherings in those areas will be reintroduced and commercial establishments will have to close at 8 p.m.. More police will patrol the streets.
Health officials will step up inspections at construction sites and in construction workers’ transport, which have been identified as an important source of new infections, Costa said.
A project called Healthy Neighborhoods will aim to involve communities more closely in the fight against the outbreak.
Portugal called off its state of emergency at the end of April as the outbreak ebbed, but in recent weeks the country has been reporting around 300 new cases daily, with 70-80% of them in the Greater Lisbon area.
The number of COVID-19 patients in hospital and in ICUs has remained relatively low.