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Portugal yesterday announced the reopening of its land border with Spain as well as began the final stage of its programme to ease Covid-19 restrictions.
The country was hit hard at the start of the year by a wave that saw 300 coronavirus deaths a day overwhelm hospitals.
But the measures have since helped bring the numbers down, with zero fatalities recorded on Friday for the second time in a week the previous day without a Covid death was in August.
Earlier in the week Prime Minister Antonio Costa announced the fourth and last stage of the deconfinement plan would begin on Saturday two days earlier than had been planned.
As well as the lifting of the border controls, the opening hours for cafes, restaurants, and cultural venues was extended, in particular at weekends.
Weddings and other gatherings would also be allowed again, albeit in venues limited to 50 percent of their capacity, as will sporting activities.
Overnight the country’s state of emergency was also downgraded to ‘situation of calamity,’ which still allows authorities to keep some measures in place.
Clara Nogueira was one of 400 people to attend a test concert in the northwestern city of Braga on Friday evening.
AFRICA TODAY NEWS, NEW YORK