Turkey to gradually start easing COVID-19 restrictions

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Turkey will gradually start easing restrictions imposed to stem the spread of the novel coronavirus as of March, the country’s president said on Feb. 17.

“We are starting the gradual normalization process as of the beginning of March by dividing our provinces into four categories in line with criteria established by our health ministry,” said Recep Tayyip Erdoğan after a Cabinet meeting at the presidential complex.

“March will be a month when we will cover a lot of ground in terms of vaccination,” Erdoğan added.

He said that provinces will be categorized as “low”, “medium”, “high” and “very high-risk” based on infection rates and the vaccination process.

The president said some 5.7 million coronavirus vaccines have been administered across the country, adding: “We have made the necessary contacts for [acquiring more] vaccines that we will need in the first place.”

Recalling that the government had announced gradual transition to face-to-face education in schools after the last week’s Cabinet meeting, he said the process was delayed in some provinces due to heavy snowfall.

The process will continue, he added.

On Jan. 14, Turkey began a mass COVID-vaccination campaign, starting with healthcare workers along with top officials to encourage public confidence in the vaccines.

Since last December, Turkey has been implementing curfew on weeknights and a full weekend curfew to curb the spread of the virus.

Hurriyet Daily News

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