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Turkey Enters Shutdown as COVID-19 Cases Soar  
Recep Tayyip Erdogan (Turkish Presidency/Murat Cetinmuhurdar - handout/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)

Turkey Enters Shutdown as COVID-19 Cases Soar  

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Monday announced a full nationwide lockdown, starting Thursday, that will last for three weeks and shutter all non-essential activity in the coronavirus-stricken country. “At a time when Europe is entering a phase of reopening, we need to rapidly cut our case numbers to below 5,000 so as not to be left behind. Otherwise, we will inevitably face heavy costs in every area, from tourism to trade and education,” Erdogan explained. All schools will be closed and any intercity travel will be mostly banned except for special authorized cases, as Ankara hopes to quash the latest morbidity spike in time for the traditional annual celebrations of the end of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan.  Turkey currently holds the world’s fourth largest number of daily new cases of the coronavirus, with over 37,000 infections and 350 deaths on Monday alone.

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