Turkey starts limited lockdown as nearly 2.5 million take exams





Istanbul - A limited lockdown started in all 81 Turkish provinces on Saturday, part of efforts to halt the spread of the novel coronavirus as 2.43 million students take university entry exams, state news agency Anadolu reported.



The limited lockdown was first introduced last weekend to prevent overcrowding and make it easier for students and parents to head to test cenres during the high school entrance exams for 1.6 million students.
The curfew is in effect from 9:30 am to 3 pm (0600 to 1200 GMT) on Saturday. A longer lockdown will be imposed on Sunday between 9:30 am and 6:30 pm, the Interior Ministry said this week.
Anadolu shared footage of students and parents wearing masks in front of schools. The students were provided with extra masks and hand sanitizers. Security personnel wore protective face shields and gloves.
Those who accompanied the students were not allowed in the school yards.
Last week, the government warned families to be careful after images of parents and relatives massing at the test centres drew criticism on social media.
"We ask the families to wait far from the test centres and not mass in groups," Health Minister Fahrettin Koca told reporters in Ankara on Wednesday.
People who have already bought a ticket for inter-city travel are exempt from the ban, while supermarkets and bakeries will remain open.
There have been more than 194,000 infections and 5,065 deaths in Turkey since first coronavirus case was announced mid-March.
Turkey started easing restrictions earlier this month, reopening cafes, restaurants, shopping malls and resuming flights.

Saturday, June 27th 2020
(dpa)
           


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