EU ban could force Portugal to turn away holiday Britons

Thousands of British holidaymakers due to visit Portugal next week may face difficulties entering the country as it has banned non-essential travel from non-EU states.

To reverse the ban is diplomatically delicate, a senior Portuguese official told The Times, because Lisbon holds the EU presidency — and the EU still recommends the ban to member states.

The Portuguese cabinet is to meet to discuss the issue today. “If they don’t resolve it the alternative will be thousands of British visitors being turned away at the airport, which is not a good scenario,” the official said.

Portugal does not expect the EU to act before May 17. “This is an awkward position for the presidency to be in,” the official said.

The European Commission is