Duvar English

A professor from the Health Ministry’s Science Commission has criticized people for flocking to shopping malls amid the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

“The queues in front of shopping malls are beyond comprehension. There is no point in aimlessly wandering around these places,” Prof. Ahmet Demircan said, as he urged people to buy what they need if it’s really necessary and leave malls as soon as possible.

“The less movement, the less people this virus infects people,” he also said.

Some 2.3 million people visited shopping malls on May 11 and 12 after Turkish authorities eased restrictions imposed over the pandemic.

Scenes of long queues in front of the malls were also criticized by Health Minister Fahrettin Koca, who pointed to the fact that social distancing was not abided by.

Demircan said that curfews showed that staying home proved effective in the fight against the virus.

“We need to abide by the rules completely in shopping malls and hair saloons to prevent a second wave. If an increase in the number of cases is observed, restrictions may be reimposed,” he said.

The professor also commented on the course of the pandemic in Turkey.

“The number of new cases are decreasing. We are concerned about possible increases from time to time. Precautions need to be followed in order for the long-term fight against the virus to succeed,” Demircan said.

Saying that sports competitions bear risks, Demircan praised the decisions adopted by the Turkish Volleyball Federation and the Turkish Basketball Federation on cancelling the league.

“We think this is appropriate. We held meetings with Turkish Football Federation head Nihat Özdemir and told him the disadvantages of resuming leagues. We think that sports competitions bear the risk of coronavirus spread. We need to act accordingly,” he said.