LISBON: The Portuguese government put the country on a state of alert on Friday to mobilise civil protection, police and the army in its efforts to control the spread of coronavirus.
The move comes after Prime Minister Antonio Costa said Thursday that it would close all schools, nurseries and universities from Monday.
“The interior and health ministers have decided to declare a state of alert throughout the country, so that civil protection and security forces are ready to intervene,” the government said in a statement.
A state of alert has been used in Portugal in the past to facilitate the fight against forest fires or to avoid a fuel shortage during a strike by tanker drivers.
Portugal has so far registered 78 cases of COVID-19 and has ordered the cancellation of events grouping more than 1,000 people in enclosed places and more than 5,000 in open areas.--AFP