Turkey to conduct PCR tests on tourists

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ANKARA

Turkey would implement PCR tests on foreign tourists arriving in Turkey as part of measures against novel coronavirus, as the government plans to resume tourism activities in late May, Health Minister Fahrettin Koca said on May 13.

“After the feast [Eid al-Fitr], we will plan to make this period healthier, by testing overseas arrivals widely, provided that they are controlled,” he said at a press conference.

The minister said they would prefer PCR tests, rather than rapid tests for the tourists.

In the past eight weeks, Turkey’s strategy to fight COVID-19 was successful, but people should not crow over on the issue of social isolation, the minister warned.

“We will defeat this outbreak as has been done in history,” he said, adding that people should avoid crowds during this time and embrace this lifestyle for a while.

Masks and social distancing are essential measures, but not sufficient, therefore people must avoid risky environments, he noted.

“The successful implementation of ‘Controlled Social Life’ will be possible by reorganizing the social space according to the outbreak conditions,” he said and warned that the past eight weeks are not enough to voice final success in the struggle against the novel coronavirus.

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