Turkey tightens inspections as virus cases increase
Turkey is expanding inspections throughout the country to curb the spread of COVID-19 amid the continued rise in the number of cases.
The country’s Interior Ministry sent a circular to the governor’s offices of all 81 provinces, laying out new measures against the outbreak.
“A new approach will be employed beyond the way inspections which had been conducted before,” the ministry said.
According to the circular, starting Nov. 6, the number of security teams working in streets and marketplaces with most crowds will be increased to enable more effective inspections.
During the inspections, all capabilities of local administrations will be mobilized, all municipal security staff will be assigned for inspections, particularly in streets or workplaces.
Authorities will scrutinize if shoppers and vendors in marketplaces are following the rules of wearing face masks and social distancing and whether stalls are placed in a safe distance from each other.
Shoppers and vendors who violate the rules will be warned and actions against them will be taken if necessary.
Authorities will constantly warn people on the places where mobility is high, such as streets and avenues, with public announcements through bullhorns about the face mask and social distancing rules.
All inner city and intercity transport vehicles as well as all taxis will be stopped to be checked if they are adhering to COVID-19 precautions.
As part of the measures, those who violate quarantine conditions will be subjected to mandatory isolation in dormitories or hostels.
On Nov. 4, the ministry said that in line with a presidential cabinet decision taken to curb the virus’s spread, indoor facilities, such as cinemas and restaurants, will close at 10 p.m. across Turkey.
COVID-19 cases have recently surged and the decision came following proposals from the Heath Ministry’s Science Board and on the instructions of President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan to ensure the safety of public health and order, added the ministry.
Facilities obliged to close down at 10 p.m. include shopping malls, mass means of transport, parks, markets, restaurants, cafes, hairdressers, sports centers, internet cafes, theaters, cinemas, and concert halls in all 81 provinces of Turkey.
On a related note, Interior Minister Süleyman Soylu said that he and his family had been discharged from the hospital they were treated in since they tested positive for COVID-19 on Oct. 31.
“Our treatment, going on for a while at a hospital, will continue at home on a rest condition for a few days, with the approval of our doctors,” Soylu said on Twitter on Nov. 5.