Costa: New state of emergency not necessary

“I sincerely do not anticipate that we will have to adopt measures that imply a state of emergency,” Costa said. [EPA-EFE/TIAGO PETINGA]

Portuguese Prime Minister António Costa said on Tuesday that there was no need for a new state of emergency to control Covid, adding that the government would not hesitate to adopt more restrictive measures to contain the virus despite the dissolution of parliament.

“I sincerely do not anticipate that we will have to adopt measures that imply a state of emergency,” Costa said, stressing that if it is necessary, even a dissolved parliament can still allow new measures to be taken.

Costa showed concern with the rising number of infections but said that vaccination has dramatically reduced the incidence rate and made the disease less severe.

Although Portugal has a much higher vaccination rate than other countries, he warned that people could not “rest in the shadow of vaccination”.

With a meeting with Infarmed scheduled for Friday, Costa said it was a good time for prevention. Although Portugal is still a long way from other European countries, it is aware of the evolution of the pandemic beyond its borders.

Costa was speaking in Rio Maior, on the sidelines of the centenary celebrations of the birth of Portuguese writer José Saramago,  which will continue until next year with an international cultural programme around the Nobel Prize for Literature.

(Dina Aleixo | Lusa)

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