ISTANBUL: President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Monday announced a lockdown across Turkey during the Eid al-Fitr holidays marking the end of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan.
“There will be a lockdown from the eve until the end of the feast,” Erdogan said in an address to the nation after the weekly cabinet meeting. That would mean from Saturday to Tuesday next week. Turkey has had all-day, weekend and sometimes longer curfews in dozens of cities including Istanbul and the capital Ankara since the start of the outbreak. This will be the first time the entire country of 83 million will be under confinement for four days.
As part of the normalisation timetable announced by the president, mosques will reopen for worshipping from May 29 in line with conditions laid out by local and religious authorities. Erdogan said schools would not reopen this academic year and would instead start in September. Figures released on Monday showed 4,171 coronavirus deaths in Turkey with over 150,000 confirmed infections. The daily death tolls have fallen below 100 in the last few weeks. Erdogan urged the Turks to rearrange their lives according to the “new order” which he defined as “controlled social life. He warned the government would not hesitate to apply tougher measures again if the data showed the situation worsening.