Within the scope of the renewal of the state of emergency, decreed by the President of the Republic, the movement of persons is limited, and travel outside the municipality of residence is prohibited during the Easter period, between 0:00 on the 9th until April 13, except for health reasons or other reasons of imperative urgency.

The state of emergency has been in force in Portugal since March 19 and, according to the Constitution, cannot last longer than 15 days, without prejudice to any renewals with the same time limit

In addition to the measure of confinement of citizens to their councils of residence, the Government prohibits gatherings of more than five people, except people with family ties.

Portugal will also shut down all airports for passenger traffic during the Easter period, between the 9th and 13th of this month, except for State, cargo or humanitarian flights.

Family life at Easter is the main concern of the Government and the President of the Republic, who, in a declaration to the country, asked Portuguese emigrants to "understand the severe restrictions" adopted "and rethink, postponing their plans" of coming to Portugal.

The President of the Republic considered that Portugal faces its greatest challenge in the last 45 years and that it has won "the first battle" against covid-19, but has now entered a second phase in which he warned that April is a crucial month.

"We will only win April if we do not facilitate, if we do not condescend, if we do not let our guard down. Other experiences have shown that situations at risk and visits to land and family lead to explosions in contamination numbers between 30 and 50 days of epidemic," said Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa, in a communication to the country, from the Palace of Belém, in Lisbon.

The rules already enacted in the first period of state of emergency remain, including the duty of home isolation, leaving only for strictly necessary situations.

Still under the renewal of the state of emergency, the Government decided to extend, until April 30, 2020, the deadlines for forest clearing operations and exempt moderator fees for patients infected with the new coronavirus.

The Government has also announced the reinforcement of the means and powers of the Authority for Working Conditions (ACT), allowing that whenever there is evidence of an illegal dismissal, the labour inspector draws up a report and notifies the employer to rectify the situation.

For the appreciation of the Assembly of the Republic, a proposal follows for the partial pardon of sentences of up to two years for less serious crimes and the speeding up of presidential pardons, aiming to avoid the spread of the covid-19 pandemic in prisons.

The draft law on prisons, according to the executive's leader, "aims to protect those who are deprived of their freedom from the covid-19 pandemic, but also all those - reintegration technicians or prison guards or other employees - who work in prison establishments" .

This Government diploma will also provide that precarious licenses, which can currently be granted by decision of the prison authorities for a maximum period of three days - and every three months - can now be granted for a period of 45 days.

The Prime Minister, António Costa, however, warned that a pardon "is subject to a condition of respect for home confinement and the absence of any type of criminal act.

The new coronavirus, responsible for the covid-19 pandemic, has already infected more than one million people worldwide, of whom more than 50,000 died.