Erdogan`s Remarks on Weekend Lock-down and Its Aftermath

Erdogan`s Remarks on Weekend Lock-down and Its Aftermath

Turkey has imposed restrictions on daily life in an effort to slow the spread of COVID-19. Though an early response to the crisis has stemmed the number of those infected, the country has had mixed success in limiting public mobility, especially on weekends and given rising temperatures.

Turkey announced the weekend lockdown late on Friday, but in the brief time before it went into effect, many people rushed out to buy food and drink in the country`s commercial hub Istanbul, a city of 16 million people, and other cities. The lockdown ended at 21:00 GMT on Sunday.

With this in mind,  "Although in a limited period of time, the incidents that occurred ahead of the implementation of the curfew was not befitting with the perfect management of the outbreak process," Soylu said.

"In a process carried out diligently and meticulously, the responsibility for all implementation of the weekend curfew to stem the pandemic falls on me in every respect," Interior Minister Suleyman Soylu said on Twitter on Sunday evening and informed the public that he has resigned from his position as an interior minister of Turkey.

Turkey`s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has rejected the resignation of his interior minister, who had said he would quit after a much-criticised weekend curfew to tackle the coronavirus outbreak which caught millions of people by surprise.

“I appreciated our interior minister’s sensitivity to the issue but I have requested him to continue his job and rejected his resignation,” Erdoğan said after the Cabinet meeting and praised Soylu for his successful work in the fight against terror and his response to various disasters Turkey had faced in the past few months.

Turkey will impose a curfew once again over the coming weekend, between April 17-19, as part of measures to curb the spread of the coronavirus, President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said Monday.

The announcement came after Erdoğan convened a Cabinet meeting over teleconference, with Turkey`s fight against the coronavirus at the top of the agenda.

“Our goal is to protect citizens who might otherwise give in to the temptation provided by the good weather, from the dangers of coronavirus. I would thus like to announce ahead that we will impose a curfew starting midnight April 17 and ending Sunday midnight,” Erdoğan said.

Commenting on scenes of citizens clamoring to get last-minute supplies in stores and bakeries across the country following last weekend`s surprise announcement, Erdoğan said all necessary precautions would be taken to avoid similar scenes.

he COVID-19 pandemic has caused many changes in practices and principles, not only at the individual level but also at the state level. The nation-states, which, for many pundits, are going through a period of regaining their power, had to re-establish their way of relating both with the nation itself and with other fellow states, establishing new types of diplomatic interactions. One of the main bases of this new diplomacy is humanitarian aid, a major necessity since many countries do not have enough in their fight against the coronavirus. Turkey, as a country that has made a name for itself in the last decade with its humanitarian efforts, has already become a prominent figure of this fresh statecraft by sending medical aid packages to many corners of the globe every other day.

"So far, we have delivered medical equipment to 34 countries," President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said Monday during a news conference following a Cabinet meeting in Istanbul. "We will continue our support (to other countries) in the upcoming days as well," he said.

Europe, as the epicenter of the pandemic, has become the continent that receives the most aid. Last week, two Turkish cargo planes landed in London to provide supplies to the U.K., followed by a set of deliveries to Italy and Spain, two of the worst-hit countries in both the continent and the world. Turkey received much gratitude from both European people and their leaders, as it filled a supply void in their struggle against the pandemic.

We hope that Turkey`s humanitarian effort during this coronavirus crises will extend to the least developing countries in Africa since those are in a dire situation.