On Saturday, May 30, Turkish authorities announced that domestic commercial flights would resume from Monday, June 1, amid the easing of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) restrictions. Flights will initially leave from Istanbul to major provinces including Ankara, Izmir, Antalya, and Trabzon. Flights will gradually resume to other cities as COVID-19 cases decrease.
Turkish authorities implemented a two-day weekend curfew in 15 provinces from 00:00 on Friday, May 29, in an effort to curb the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19). The two-day curfew covers the provinces of Ankara, Istanbul, Izmir, Balikesir, Bursa, Eskisehir, Gaziantep, Kayseri, Kocaeli, Konya, Manisa, Sakarya, Samsun, Van, and Zonguldak. Markets, food stores, and other essential services will be permitted to operate between 10:00 - 17:00 (local time) but will be closed on Sunday, May 31.
On Thursday, May 28, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan announced that the government would lift restrictions on intercity travel and allow restaurants, cafes, parks, sports facilities, and other public spaces to reopen from June 1. Movement restrictions will remain in place for those over 65 and under 18, although exercise times for children and teenagers were extended to 14:00 - 20:00 (local time) on Wednesdays and Fridays.
As of May 30, health authorities have confirmed 162,120 COVID-19 cases and 4489 associated deaths in the country. Further spread of the virus is expected in the near term.
The first case of COVID-19 was reported on December 31 and the source of the outbreak has been linked to a wet market in Wuhan (Hubei province, China). Human-to-human and patient-to-medical staff transmission of the virus have been confirmed. Many of the associated fatalities have been due to pneumonia caused by the virus.
Cases of the virus have been confirmed in numerous countries and territories worldwide. Virus-screening and quarantining measures are being implemented at airports worldwide, as well as extensive travel restrictions. On March 11, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared the global outbreak a pandemic.
Pneumonia symptoms include dry cough, chest pain, fever, and trouble breathing. Pneumonia can be contagious and can be transmitted from human to human. The influenza virus, or the flu, is a common cause of viral pneumonia.
Measures adopted by local authorities evolve quickly and are usually effective immediately. Depending on the evolution of the outbreak in other countries, authorities are likely to modify, at very short notice, the list of countries whose travelers are subject to border control measures or entry restrictions upon their arrival to the territory in question. It is advised to postpone nonessential travel due to the risk that travelers may be refused entry or be subject to quarantine upon their arrival or during their stay.
To reduce the risk of COVID-19 transmission, travelers are advised to abide by the following measures:
- Frequently clean hands by applying an alcohol-based hand rub or washing with soap and water.
- When coughing and sneezing, cover mouth and nose with a flexed elbow or tissue; if used, throw the tissue away immediately and wash hands.
- If experiencing a fever, cough, difficulty breathing, or any other symptoms suggestive of respiratory illness, including pneumonia, call emergency services before going to the doctor or hospital to prevent the potential spread of the virus.
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