Turkey detains 19 people over ‘provocative’ coronavirus posts

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Turkey closed cafes, entertainment and sports venues to contain the spread of coronavirus. (Reuters)
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There had been were social media posts targeting officials and spreading panic and fear by suggesting that the virus had spread widely in Turkey. (Reuters)
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Updated 17 March 2020

Turkey detains 19 people over ‘provocative’ coronavirus posts

  • Social media posts were targeting officials and spreading panic and fear by suggesting that the virus had spread widely in Turkey
  • The number of confirmed cases in Turkey has risen to 47

ISTANBUL: Turkey has identified 93 suspects who have made “unfounded and provocative” postings on social media about the coronavirus outbreak and has detained 19 of them, the Turkish Interior Ministry said.
The move came as Turkey closed cafes, entertainment and sports venues, suspended mass prayers in mosques and extended a flight ban to 20 countries to contain the coronavirus spread, as the number of confirmed cases rose to 47.
The interior ministry statement said there were social media posts which were targeting officials and spreading panic and fear by suggesting that the virus had spread widely in Turkey and that officials had taken insufficient measures.
“Nineteen of these suspects have been detained and the process of detaining others who have been identified is continuing,” said the statement, issued late on Monday.
Last Wednesday, Turkey became the last major economy to report an outbreak of coronavirus and Health Minister Fahrettin Koca announced 29 newly confirmed cases late on Monday, bringing the total to 47. No deaths have been reported.
The Istanbul governor’s office said on Monday that Turkish citizens who request to return from nine European countries would be brought back by midnight on March 17 on condition that they are quarantined for 14 days.


Dubai clarifies rules on wearing face masks in public

Updated 17 min 31 sec ago

Dubai clarifies rules on wearing face masks in public

  • The clarification comes as Dubai eases public mobility restrictions and allowing businesses to resume operation

DUBAI: Children under the age of the six, the disabled, and those who have respiratory problems are exempt from wearing face masks in public areas, Dubai’s Supreme Committee of Crisis and Disaster Management has clarified.

The new guidelines come as Dubai returns to normal life – easing public mobility restrictions and allowing businesses to resume operation.

People are allowed to temporarily remove their masks if they are driving alone or with family members, according to the new guideline, adding those who are eating or drinking, and engaging in exercise or medical treatments are also permitted to remove their masks.