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World Erdogan under pressure as coronavirus cases spike in Turkey

07:55  08 april  2020
07:55  08 april  2020 Source:   msn.com

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The number of coronavirus cases in Turkey has grown rapidly in the three weeks since the first was confirmed, exceeding 10,800 on Monday. But Tusiad, Turkey ’s largest industrial association, wants the government to go further, citing the large number of people who are ineligible because they are

ISTANBUL — Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan promised on Monday to expand the number of hospital beds in Istanbul, the epicenter of the country’s coronavirus outbreak, as The latest deaths raised the toll from COVID-19 in Turkey to 649 people, Health Minister Fahrettin Koca said on Twitter.

President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has stepped up measures to stem rapidly growing coronavirus cases in Turkey but his refusal to impose a full lockdown to keep the economy afloat is drawing criticism.

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The Turkish authorities have so far confirmed 1,529 cases and 37 deaths. The latest figures were reported by Turkish Health Minister Fahrettin Koca on Monday, with more than 20,000 tests having been performed on people suspected of having the coronavirus . In a statement, the Health Ministry

With gatherings banned, restrictions on intercity trips, and the obligation to wear masks almost anywhere, Erdogan has imposed a series of tough measures but thus far resisted calls for a complete confinement.

Parliament began on Tuesday debating a government-sponsored bill to release up to a third of detainees in the country's overcrowded prisons as a safety measure against the coronavirus outbreak.

With 34,109 cases and 725 deaths, according to official figures published on Tuesday, Turkey is the ninth country in the world most affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

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What's alarming is the fast spread of the disease in Turkey, which reported its first official case on March 11. The number of cases is doubling in every few days: From 7,400 on March 28, it reached 15,000 on April 1 and exceeded 30,000 on Monday, according to official figures.

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Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan assured the nation early Sunday about efforts to control the coronavirus pandemic, saying Turkey is doing its duty with its He also said Turkey has taken contingency measures to help the country deal with the virus. “We have all kinds of products available.

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- 'Limits' -

The government has very quickly taken nationwide measures from shutting schools and cultural spaces to suspending flights with the countries hit by the virus.

They have been gradually reinforced with a confinement order for people aged over 65 and under 20 and quarantine of dozens of towns and villages.

On Tuesday, Health Minister Fahrettin Koca said in a reassuring tone that the occupancy rate in the intensive care units was only around 60 percent. 

But as the number of victims soars, there have been increasing calls on the government to impose a complete confinement like in Italy or France.

"Everyone absolutely has to stay at home, it must be made compulsory," a doctor who treats infected patients under intensive care at an Istanbul hospital told AFP on condition of anonymity.

"We are receiving more and more patients every day. We will soon reach the limits of our capacity."

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Officials said those cases involved fewer direct contacts with the infected people than Cole may have had A Harford County woman became sick after traveling to Turkey , while a Montgomery man who fell The second D.C. coronavirus case involves a man who was treated in Maryland but developed

Turkish President Erdoğan declared that areas in or around two Istanbul airports will be converted into Erdoğan added that Turkey has mobilized everything it has to fight the coronavirus threat This comes amid a spike in confirmed coronavirus deaths and cases in cities across the world

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The opposition parties, the country's main medical association TTB and unions have also urged the government to take tougher measures to deter people from going out.

"It will be impossible to control this pandemic if millions of people ... go out to work," the president of the Turkish Doctors' Union (TTB), Sinan Adiyaman, told the Turkish media this week.

In an interview with AFP last week, the opposition mayor of Istanbul called for a confinement in the country's economic capital where more than half of the COVID-19 cases have been recorded.

"Even if 15 percent of the population goes out, we quickly reach two million people ... This has the potential to increase the threat."

- 'Time lost'-

Erdogan has so far urged Turks to place themselves in "voluntary quarantine" rather than declare a compulsory order for them to stay home, in an attempt not to stop an already fragile economy which has been in a recovery state after years of crises. 

Coronavirus: No new case in Daegu, ex-epicenter in South Korea

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Britain has changed its travel advice advising against all but essential travel to the whole of mainland China, as a result of the new coronavirus . Japan and Germany have discovered cases of the virus in people with no history of travel to Wuhan, the city where it first emerged.

Cases of coronavirus in Turkey continue to climbCredit: EPA. Is it safe to go to Turkey amid global coronavirus outbreakCredit: AP:Associated Press . If the hotel is a large chain, it could be worth asking to change your stay to another location or delay your trip but they are under no obligation to

Last week, he said: "Turkey is obliged to continue producing and keep the wheels (of the economy) turning under any circumstances."

Before any hardening of the measures, many Turks have already taken their own precautions. Most of Istanbul's usually busy arteries including the pedestrian Istiklal Street are almost deserted.

Many Turks no longer set foot outside -- some of them have returned to the age-old tradition of lowering baskets through their window for their groceries, while some others rely on very efficient delivery services.

The doctor at Istanbul hospital hailed residents' common sense and "good measures" taken by the government which has ramped up tests to reach over 200,000 thus far.

But he warned: "If the number of cases keeps increasing at this pace, the result will be the same as elsewhere: many losses of lives. We have already lost a lot of time."

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St. Tammany Parish sees spike in COVID-19 deaths .
St. Tammany Parish sees spike in COVID-19 deathsThey say the numbers were relatively flat until Thursday but then Friday they jumped dramatically. This is not the trend St. Tammany officials wanted to see.

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