Turkey on Friday announced several strong new measures to stem the spread of the novel coronavirus, a pandemic which has killed thousands of people worldwide, ONA reports citing Anadolu Agency.
Recep Tayyip Erdogan, the nation’s president, announced a curfew restricting members of the public under age 20 from leaving their homes except if absolutely necessary.
He also announced a 15-day ban on vehicles leaving or entering 31 provinces, including Istanbul -- home to nearly one-fifth of Turkey’s population -- as well as the urban centers of the capital Ankara, Izmir, Bursa, and Adana.
The wearing of face masks in crowded areas including stores is also now mandatory, said the president.
So far, Turkey has registered over 20,000 coronavirus cases, and the death toll stands at 425. A total of 484 people have fully recovered following treatment.
Since appearing in Wuhan, China, last December, the novel coronavirus has spread to at least 181 countries and regions.
Data compiled by U.S.-based Johns Hopkins University shows worldwide infections surging past 1 million, with almost 57,000 deaths. Over 223,000 people have recovered.