Koca said on Twitter that 12 more people have been diagnosed with the virus, bringing the total number of cases in the country to 18.
Koca also disclosed where some of the patients had originated from. He said two of the new cases were related to the first case reported in the country, seven had traveled from Europe and three from the United States.
“Every detected case and every isolation is a security measure for all of us,” he noted.
On March 11, Turkey became the last major economy to report an outbreak after taking what the World Health Organization (WHO) described as “vigilant” measures to delay it.
Since then, the government has ramped up measures to halt the spread of the virus, closing schools and universities, holding sports events without spectators and halting flights to many countries.
Thousands of Muslims returning to Turkey from a pilgrimage in Saudi Arabia were being taken into quarantine on March 15 due to concerns about the spread of the coronavirus.
Television pictures showed buses transporting pilgrims along the highway from Ankara’s airport to the city as part of an operation to place those returning into student dormitories.
The head of Turkey’s religious directorate, Ali Erbaş, said on March 14 that the last 5,300 Turkish pilgrims were in the process of returning to Turkey, but at the time he said the pilgrims should self-isolate at home for two weeks.
A day earlier he said that 21,000 pilgrims were to return from Saudi Arabia by March 15, but it was not clear whether they were all to go into quarantine.
The youth and sports ministry said the pilgrims were to be kept under observation for 14 days in five student dormitories – in the capital Ankara and the central Turkish city of Konya – with a capacity of 10,330 people.
It said the three-week closure of universities in Turkey, announced last week, meant that the dormitories were mostly empty and that the remaining students had been transferred to other dormitories.
Bars and nightclubs will also be closed from March 16 in a bid to curb the spread of coronavirus, the Turkish Interior Ministry said on March 15.
It said the temporary ban will go into effect at 10 am (0700 GMT) on March 16. The ministry did not say how long the ban would last.
After emerging in Wuhan, China last December, the virus, officially known as COVID-19, has spread to at least 141 countries and territories.
The global death toll from the virus has surpassed 5,700, with more than 152,000 cases confirmed worldwide, according to the WHO.
Hurriyet Daily News