Turkey Officially Announced a Second Wave of Coronavirus

World | September 3, 2020, Thursday // 09:32| Views: | Comments: 0
Bulgaria: Turkey Officially Announced a Second Wave of Coronavirus pixabay.com

Capital Ankara has seen the highest recent increase in COVID-19 cases as Turkey is going through the second peak of the first wave of the pandemic, the Health Minister Fahrettin Koca said Wednesday.

"We have increased the number of filiation teams to over 10,000," he said, adding that at least 29,865 health workers were infected with COVID-19, while 52 died.

According to the minister, Turkey registered 1,596 new COVID-19 cases in the past 24 hours, while 45 died.

The total number of coronavirus cases in the country reached 273,301.

Nearly 108,000 tests for COVID-19 were carried out on Wednesday, according to the data shared by Koca on Twitter.

Some 947 patients recovered in the past day, Koca said, as the total number of recoveries reached 246,876.

The national death toll has now reached 6,462.

"Carelessness during weddings and holidays brought us to this situation. The epidemic continues to increase. The virus is infecting more and more people every day. The number of cases we have announced does not decrease. For this reason, our citizens continue to die every day," Koca said.

Koca noted that there is a possibility that COVID-19 cases will combine with seasonal diseases, but new measures have been taken against this situation.

"No one has caught COVID-19 twice in Turkey, but this does not mean it will never happen," he said.

The minister said that situation across the country is under control. There is no serious increase in Istanbul, Trakya and Aegean regions.

"Unfortunately, there is an increase in Central Anatolia and Southeast. Ankara, Istanbul, Izmir, Bursa, Erzurum, Sivas and Kayseri are still among our high-risk provinces," Koca said.

According to Koca, the number of cases in Ankara is doubled compared with Istanbul.

"We started to take measures in this regard," the minister said, adding that at the moment they are not planning to impose curfew in those regions.

Koca also said it was suggested by the Coronavirus Scientific Advisory Board that the first half of the football season should be continued without an audience.

Turkey has also banned some social activities, including henna nights and engagement ceremonies, in all provinces as of Sept. 4, the Interior Ministry announced later on Wednesday.

The Interior Ministry sent a circular on expanding virus restrictions from 14 to all of Turkey’s 81 provinces.

Weddings will be limited to just an hour and the chairs in wedding halls will be rearranged per social distancing rules. The dance floors will be closed.

All kinds of food and beverage service and catering, except packaged water service, will be prohibited, including meals at weddings.

Citizens aged 65 and over and children under the age of 15 who are not first- or second-degree relatives of the bride and groom will be prohibited from attending weddings and related ceremonies.

At least one public officer like municipal police will be attending wedding ceremonies to inspect the measures.

Increasing caseloads have been linked to the public's failure to comply with new rules, including wearing masks and maintaining social distance. Although Turkey eased a string of restrictions, from weekend curfews to intercity travel, the mask requirement and social distancing rules remain in place. Security forces routinely conduct inspections in crowded areas and mete out warnings to those without masks, sometimes imposing fines.

Turkey lifted its strictest measures against the coronavirus outbreak in June, but officials are closely monitoring businesses and individuals' compliance with measures, particularly in regard to mandatory mask-wearing and social distancing./Daily Sabah

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