Duvar English – Reuters
President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan appeared in Turkey’s parliament with an extra cameraman on March 11 – an aide with a thermal camera checking people he met for fever which could be linked to coronavirus.
The aide scanned journalists and politicians who crowded around the Turkish leader as he arrived in parliament on the day that the first coronavirus case was confirmed in Turkey.
A presidential official said the thermal camera could be used in Erdoğan’s future public appearances to limit his exposure to coronavirus.
The 66-year-old president has shunned handshakes with dignitaries this week, putting his hand over his heart instead at meetings with European Council President Charles Michel in Brussels and with newly accredited ambassadors in Ankara.
On both occasions he gave a one-word explanation for his actions: “Corona!”
On March 9, he told a group of his supporters that they should not shake hands since he might have brought them coronavirus.
“Actually, I might have brought you coronavirus so we should not shake hands. We have stopped shaking hands everywhere,” Erdoğan said in Silivri.
One of his supporters, in return, said, “We accept everything that’s coming from you.”