Turkey’s coronavirus death toll has reached 5,001, after 27 more people died in the previous 24 hours, Health Minister Fahrettin Koca said on June 23.
Health officials conducted 42,982 more tests in the space of 24 hours, taking the total so far to over 3 million, Koca said on Twitter.
“The number of [newly] recovered patients is greater than the number of new cases. For a more normal life, we must bring down the number of cases by abiding by the measures,” Koca wrote.
Turkey has recently seen an upward trend in the daily number of virus infections after the government authorized cafes, restaurants, gyms, parks, beaches and museums to reopen, lifted inter-city travel restrictions and eased stay-at-home orders for the elderly and young on June 1.
The daily number of cases climbed to around 1,500 last week after hovering around 800-900 previously. After this spike in infection figures, authorities made the wearing of masks compulsory in several more provinces, including Istanbul and the capital Ankara.
President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said on June 20 Turkey had lost some ground in its battle with the coronavirus but a focus on hygiene, masks and social distancing will protect people and help the economy rebound in the second half of the year.
“The numbers in recent days show that we have lost our position in the fight against the epidemic,” Erdoğan said in a televised address. “But we aim to remove the pandemic from our agenda by respecting the cleaning, mask and distance rules.”