Eid al-Fitr Celebration: Turkey imposes 4-day lockdown

by Akeem Alao

Turkey has imposed a four-day nationwide lockdown for the Eid al-Fitr holiday.

While disclosing this on Friday May 22, 2020 Turkish President, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, warned of tough measures if people fail to follow physical distancing rules.

The lockdown, which is effective from May 23 to 26, is aimed at curbing the spread of the new coronavirus that has claimed more than 4,200 people in the country.

Meanwhile, markets, grocery stores, greengrocers, and butchers will continue to operate from 10am to 5pm local time (07:00 – 14:00 GMT) on May 23, but they will be closed from May 24 to 26.

Bakeries will remain open during the four-day lockdown, the country’s broadest yet.

This year’s Eid celebrations will be markedly constrained, with people unable to attend large gatherings and feast together, or travel to visit family and friends.

Worshippers will also not be able to attend mosques, where congregational prayers have been suspended since March 16, although some will gradually reopen next week.

Turkey has not had a stringent countrywide lockdown since reporting its first positive case on March 11, resorting instead to weekend curfews in some provinces.

Earlier this week, shopping centres, barbershops and hair salons were allowed to reopen across the country after a nearly two-month closure.

As of Friday, the country had reported a total of 154,500 coronavirus cases, including 116,111 recoveries, according to data gathered by Johns Hopkins University in the United States.

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