“There are no institutions that can be successful [in preventing fires] if the Portuguese do not join”, said the President of the Republic, calling on everyone to “start in the winter working for the summer”, in the expectation that the population will play “a key role” in the coming fire season.

Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa was speaking in Mafra, at the end of the presentation of the Safe Forest Operation that the GNR will carry out between the 1st of February and the 30th of November.

A presentation which was “very impressive, very clear, very transparent and showing the availability and competence of the National Republican Guard”, said the head of state, adding that the government expects that the coming year will be “difficult in terms of fires”.

First, "because the information we have at the European level goes in that direction" and, second, "because six years have passed since the fires of 2017 and anyone who knows these cycles knows that, in terms of fuel accumulation, this makes this year a more complicated one than 2022, 2021, 2020”, he estimated.