Turkish professor warns people not to hug during Eid al-Adha amid pandemic

Turkey's Coronavirus Science Committee member Prof. Seçil Özkan noted that a new peak in the COVID-19 pandemic could occur during the upcoming Eid al-Adha holiday when the population tends to travel and reunite with family in large groups. "Let's please not hug after traveling," said Özkan.

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A new peak in the COVID-19 pandemic could occur following the upcoming Eid al-Adha holiday during which a large portion of the population usually travel and reunite with family, Coronavirus Science Committee member Prof. Seçil Özkan said. 

"Let's please not hug after traveling," Özkan noted. "I know it's hard but masks should stay on during bus trips."

The expert also said that vaccination would be key in preventing the spread of new variants of coronavirus, and urged everyone to maintain protective measures as the effects of the new variants become more apparent. 

"I urge utmost caution during the holiday. I'd recommend keeping visitations to a minimum. People shouldn't take off their masks at the same time in houses," Özkan added. 

Dismissing precautions during Eid and lack of sufficient vaccination could trigger a new peak in the pandemic, the expert said, noting that masks remain mandatory in Turkey. 

Vacationers should keep their masks on in hotels, should maintain social distancing on the beach and would be wise to avoid crowds even while swimming, Özkan noted.