Skip to main content

Turkey to reimpose curfews after new COVID-19 cases double

Putting normalization efforts on hold, Turkish officials will reimpose weekend curfews after the rate of new COVID-19 cases doubled in recent weeks.
People shop in Istanbul's famous Spice Market on July 09, 2020 in Istanbul, Turkey.

ISTANBUL – New coronavirus cases continue to surge in Turkey, prompting state officials to reimpose weekend curfews during the month of Ramadan and reverse a normalization drive that had eased restrictions since March 1. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan announced new social distancing measures after a cabinet meeting Monday evening.

According to health ministry data, the rate of daily COVID-19 infections more than doubled nationwide over the last two weeks, from about 15,500 on March 15 to 32,400 Monday. During the same period, the number of virus-linked deaths also rose from 63 to 154 on March 29.

Taken together, the trends raised concerns among health experts and medical workers, who say the government’s reopening measures were premature and supported tighter restrictions to stop an ongoing surge in the country.

“The normalization drive came early and the vaccination campaign has not been rolled out fast enough,” Dr. Vedat Bulut, secretary general of the executive committee for the Turkish Medical Association, told Al-Monitor.

Access the Middle East news and analysis you can trust

Join our community of Middle East readers to experience all of Al-Monitor, including 24/7 news, analyses, memos, reports and newsletters.


Only $100 per year.