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Coronavirus lockdown leaves Istanbul’s streets to the cats

Ankara, Nov 29 (IANS) Turkey observed the second weekend as part of a partial curfew imposed across the country in an effort to to curb the increase in the number of coronavirus cases.

In the largest city of Istanbul with a population of 16.5 million, markets and groceries were filled with customers who were doing some final shopping before the lockdown started at 8 p.m. on Saturday.

Closed shops at Istanbul’s old bazaar Tahtakale during curfew in Istanbul, Turkey. EPA
A man stands in front of the closed shops at Istanbul’s old bazaar Tahtakale during curfew in Istanbul, Turkey. EPA

The curfew will end at 10 a.m. on Sunday before starting again at 8 p.m. and running until 5 a.m. on Monday.

In mid-November, the government reimposed partial lockdowns on weekends, closed restaurants and cafes, and introduced new working hours for the businesses, suspending all activities of local gaming halls, clubs, tea gardens, as well as football fields across the country.

Despite the measures however, the number of coronavirus cases has been following an upward trend in the nation, prompting additional restrictions.

The Interior Ministry announced on Friday that the meetings and activities of non-governmental organizations, associations, professional organizations, unions, and cooperatives are suspended for three more months.

Turkey has so far reported more than 578,000 confirmed cases, with 13,373 deaths.

COVID-19 travel guidance

From 5 November to 2 December 2020, travelling away from home, including internationally, is restricted from England except in limited circumstances such as for work or for education. Different rules apply in ScotlandWales and Northern Ireland. You must follow all the rules that apply to you.

The Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office (FCDO) provides guidance on COVID and non-COVID risks overseas. The FCDO currently advises against all but essential travel to many countries and territories on the basis of COVID risks. You should check the travel advice for your destination.

Travel disruption is possible worldwide. Other countries may bring in new measures with little notice such as border closures, movement restrictions or quarantine rules. Travellers should be prepared to stay overseas longer than planned.

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