Turkey to impose new measures to fight coronavirus surge, Erdogan says

·1-min read
Turkish President Erdogan speaks in Ankara

ISTANBUL (Reuters) - Turkey's President Tayyip Erdogan said on Tuesday that the government will impose tighter measures to respond to surging numbers of coronavirus patients and impose partial lockdowns at weekends across the country.

"A lockdown restriction will be imposed outside the hours of 1000-2000 over the weekends in a way that will not disrupt supply and production chains," Erdogan said.

Speaking after a cabinet meeting, Erdogan also said all schools will remain closed and continue online education until the year-end and all restaurants and cafes will only offer a delivery service.

Turkey's advisory science board has recommended that the government should implement concrete measures to slow the spread of COVID-19, Health Minister Fahrettin Koca said on Monday, as the number of daily cases has spiked in recent weeks.

Ankara only announces the daily number of symptomatic cases, of which there were 3,819 on Tuesday, as well as 103 deaths, both around the levels last seen in April, bringing the total death toll to 11,704 from the disease.

"If the increasing trend of the outbreak continues, it will become inevitable for the measures that resulted in painful outcomes for all of us to be back on the agenda," Erdogan said.

(Reporting by Tuvan Gumrukcu; Writing by Ezgi Erkoyun; Editing by Ece Toksabay and Giles Elgood)