"The Government of Brazil, aware of the difficulties faced by Brazilian citizens in Portugal due to the suspension of direct flights between the two countries, agreed with the Government of Portugal to allow an emergency commercial flight by the airline TAP between Lisbon and Guarulhos [São Paulo]. The flight is scheduled for next Friday, February 26, "informed the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in a statement.
The flight on 26 February is a private operation, which has been considered to be " nonsense ", because "governments are supposed to be dealing with flights, but they are putting on a private operation", Ricardo Amaral Pessôa told Lusa. The TAP website has had problems with access for passengers, he exemplified. "It may be that the site goes down, but as we are in an emergency situation ... it cannot fail".
On the other hand, the Brazilian government has insisted that "the Brazilian embassy and general consulates in Portugal continue to monitor the situation of Brazilians", but those who want to travel "have had no contact with the consulate, nor with the embassy", stressed Ricardo Amaral, saying that “people call the emergency number and no one answers”.
Ricardo Amaral Pessôa, who is also a member of the Consultative Council for Immigration Affairs (COCAI), representing Brazilians in Portugal, says he has a list of about "300 Brazilians who had tickets purchased by airlines Latam, Azul and Tap", who have been unable to travel because of the suspension of flights between Portugal and Brazil.
According to the official, there are already some alternatives, but not for those who bought Azul tickets, who will have to pay between 842 and 1,300 euros, to travel on Friday's flight. In addition to those who had purchased tickets, "there are other people who want to return to Brazil and want to take advantage of the flight," he said, although admitting that they cannot purchase tickets. In spite of everything, the associative leader considers that the number of those who want to return to Brazil, because they are in a situation of vulnerability "is small", when compared to last year, during the first lockdown.
The Brazilian executive, chaired by Jair Bolsonaro, stressed that it is a "private operation" and that those interested in traveling should contact TAP directly to book or reschedule tickets.
Also according to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the two Governments have maintained contacts to facilitate the realisation of emergency flights since the suspension of operations decreed by the Portuguese executive, on January 27, adding that the "possibility of making new ones is under negotiation. flights, on an equally commercial basis ". The trip from Lisbon to São Paulo will take place the day before TAP's flight to repatriate Portuguese to Brazil, scheduled for the next 27th, announced the Portuguese Ministry of Foreign Affairs.