Only four percent of Turkey's health workers are immune to COVID-19, a recent series of tests conducted by the Turkish Statistical Institute (TÜİK) revealed. Meanwhile, immunity among Istanbulites measured around three percent.
Turkey has further backslided from democracy and the rule of law during the COVID-19 period, with the government increasing its levels of repression against the pro-Kurdish HDP and Kurdish people, according to a new report released by the party. The HDP said that the coronavirus has given the AKP government a cover to expand its authority, likening the current implementations to those of 1990s, during which the state staged a heavily discriminatory policy towards the Kurds as a whole.
Turkey will be resuming flights to and from Russia as of July 15. The country is the latest addition to a list of 31 others that Ankara allows travels to.
Istanbul, the capital Ankara and the southeastern provinces of Gaziantep, Şanlıurfa, and Diyarbakır lead in COVID-19 cases, Turkey's Health Minister Fahrettin Koca said on July 13. Koca made the remarks as Turkey registered 1,008 new cases, bringing the totally tally to 214,001.
The Burdur governor's office announced on July 13 that a group of soldiers performing their compulsory military service at an army base in the province have tested positive for COVID-19. Shortly after this statement, Defense Ministry said that the number of soldiers who had contracted the virus was 23.
Turkey's metropolitan cities Istanbul, Ankara and central Anatolian Konya are leading in the number of COVID-19 patients who are intubated or who need intensive care.
In the past four months, none of our municipalities prepared the infrastructure for washing our hands. They were not able to meet the sidewalk conditions of 1.5 meters width for the social distancing of pedestrians. Almost all of our 1,397 municipalities have failed according to these criteria, including opposition ones.
Initial results of a fresh study showed that Konya's sewage has the highest COVID-19 concentration among all Turkish provinces, followed by Istanbul. A researcher has said that after Konya and Istanbul came Bursa, İzmit, İzmir and Antalya's certain regions.
The World Health Organization (WHO) has said that it sent millions of masks, gloves, goggles and other items worth $1.7 million to protect healthcare professionals and other frontline workers in Turkey from COVID-19. "WHO has also assisted the Ministry of Health to track the spread of COVID-19 in Istanbul, one of the cities hit hardest by the pandemic," it said.
The Turkish government needs to take independent scientific advice into account if it really wants to gain total control of the pandemic. Attempting to suppress critics, the media and scientific advice is not the solution.
Turkey's Health Minister Fahrettin Koca has said that the country will soon start mass production of favipiravir, a drug used in COVID-19 treatment, as the licensing process is expected to be completed in a couple of days. Koca said that the country will sell it on the international market and also use it to treat its own coronaviurus patients.
Turkey's Central Bank has said that the removal of certain preventive measures imposed to combat the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and the ensuing demand were the primary factors influencing inflation in June. According to the Central Bank's report, consumer prices went up 1.13 percent in June, rising 1.23 points and increasing 12.62 percent annually.
Turkey's Health Minister Fahrettin Koca warned against a rising number of COVID-19 patients in intensive care on July 5. The number of patients in intensive care spiked by 34 on July 5, reaching 1,127.
Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu has said that Turkey was treated unfairly with the decision to exclude it from the European Union's safe travel list. "We see that Turkey is being treated unfairly and that some countries were included in the list as a political gesture," he said, adding that the decision to exclude Turkey is political.
Vural Özdemir writes: Both scientists and journalists seek the truth. But the truth is caught between a rock and a hard place with COVID-19. We are facing, on the one hand, an anti-science movement and, on the other hand, scientific essentialism that omits the role of power politics and human values in the making of truth. As an antidote, we need a new narrative on evidence frameworks in journalism that expands on the classic 5W + 1H.