Turkey has introduced more stringent measures to combat the coronavirus outbreak as the number of deaths from the virus in Turkey rises to 30 and the number of confirmed cases to 1,236 as announced in the evening of March 22nd by Health Minister Fahrettin Koca who said that a total of 20,345 tests to detect the coronavirus cases had been carried out.
Youth and Sports Minister Mehmet Kasapoğlu said today that more than 11,000 people who arrived in Turkey from abroad have been quarantined in 36 dormitories across 23 provinces. He added that Istanbul is currently hosting 1,955 people, Ankara 3,058, Konya 2,180, Kocaeli 891 and Isparta 586 in quarantine where they will be closely monitored for symptoms of coronavirus.
Turkish Airlines will halt all its international flights as of March 27th, except those to Hong Kong, Moscow, Ethiopia, New York, and Washington, whereas cargo flights and domestic flights will continue. The carrier is presently not using 85% of its planes. Turkish Airlines has also suspended its services for passengers aged 65 or above as part of coronavirus measures of the country.
The flight ban includes the following countries: Angola, Austria, Azerbaijan, Algeria, Bangladesh, Belgium, Cameroon, Canada, Chad, Czechia, China, Colombia, Djibouti, Denmark, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Egypt, Equatorial Guinea, Finland, France, Germany, Guatemala, Georgia, Hungary, India, Italy, Iraq, Iran, Ireland, Ivory Coast, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Kosovo, Kuwait, Latvia, Lebanon, Montenegro, Mongolia, Morocco, Moldova, Mauritania, Nepal, Niger, Norway, Holland, North Macedonia, Oman, Philippines, Panama, Peru, Poland, Portugal, South Korea, Slovenia, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Saudi Arabia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkish Cyprus, Taiwan, Tunisia, Uzbekistan, United Arab Emirates, the UK and Ukraine.
In a presidential decree published on the Official Gazette on March 22nd , it is now required that Turkish civil servants work from home and in shifts. Such flexible work arrangements applies to employees of all public institutions and organisations.
The Banks Association of Turkey (TBB) also decided to recommend to its member banks that bank employees will now work from 12 am to 5 pm. Many banks, including Garanti BBVA, Türkiye İş Bankası, Yapı Kredi Bankası and HSBC have already agreed to implement these new working hours.