Reports say the Metropolitan Police were called, on the 27th of January, to the Portuguese General Consulate at 3 Portland Place.

The issue seems to be nothing new as several Portuguese citizens who had traveled to this diplomatic service were turned away by the staff even though they had booked their appointments.

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The reasons given were alleged to be due to lack of staffing but they didn't seem to go the extra mile, because at closing time, everyone was just asked to leave the premises regardless of their appointments (which we've learned can take up to 2 month to get).

This is an ongoing issue since at least November last year when Portuguese news Broadcaster SIC initially reported the situation. It's also important to keep in mind that Portugal holds Consulate representations in only both London and Manchester which forces citizens who don't live in either area to travel several hundreds of miles only to be turned away.

The Portuguese Foreign Minister has made promises that there was a plan to increase staff levels in this services but the reality seems to be unchanged.

This issue has been gaining relevance in Social Media Networks like Facebook where users say they feel "ashamed" with the services provided and some indicate that having been put through the same, they chose to travel to Portugal claiming it to be easier, faster and overall cheaper!

Other reports state inconsistency and incompetence of the services, both by phone or email.

A Portuguese couple living in south London attempted to register their new born child and to do so tried calling this services in London but without much luck. Once after 30 minutes of holding the line they were just forwarded to an automated system requesting their details for a call back. That call back never happened so they resorted to the email... 2 weeks and no reply to the email either. They sent a new email, this time with a copy to the Portuguese Foreign Affairs Office as well. After a couple of days, they finally had a reply. The reply was a standard email with no explanation or apology for the delay, just a link to create an appointment, but the link to the website didn't work.

Having their past experience they replied to the email with a copy to the Foreign Affairs Office. A new link was sent. This time for a page that actually worked where they managed to create an appointment in 5 weeks time which was about the the same time they had lost in the process up until that time!