In Portugal’s capital city of Lisbon, the mayor’s office has put up posters amid an uptick in cases and reports of parties that have attracted as many as 1,000 revellers.
“You know who also never misses an illegal party? The virus,” the posters read.
In June, the country of 10.3 million people recorded 9,441 confirmed cases, according to the health ministry – an average of 314 new cases a day.
Portugal’s per capita rate of new infections now ranks among the highest in Europe, second only to Sweden.
The government has responded by introducing restrictions in the Greater Lisbon area.
Starting today, in 19 of the 118 parishes in the Lisbon metropolitan area, residents have been ordered to stay in their homes, allowed out only for food or medicine or to travel to work, play sports or care for vulnerable family members.
Gatherings are limited to five people in these areas, compared with a 20-person limit in most of the country.
Initially hailed for its rapid response to the virus, the Portuguese government has pointed to widespread testing to explain the rise in new cases, with an average of 98,000 new tests carried out weekly.
The number of lives claimed by the virus remains relatively low in the country, with 1,576 deaths.
On Wednesday, António Costa, the prime minister of Portugal, and his Spanish counterpart, Pedro Sánchez, reopened the shared border to travellers, bringing an end to a closure that stretched more than three months.
“I can’t give you a hug,” Sánchez said apologetically as the mask-clad prime ministers greeted each other.