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COVID: Turkey starts its first total lockdown and bans alcohol sales

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Istanbul by Night, Turkey

Istanbul by Night, Turkey. Photo: Rajiv Bhuttan / flickr.

Turkey is preparing for its first extended total lockdown, from 7 p.m. today until May 17, during which people will only be able to go out for shopping between 5 a.m. and 5 p.m. to avoid a spike in infections due to the end of Ramadan holiday at the beginning of May.

Although the closure of all non-essential activity already applies during the weekend, for the first time during the pandemic the confinement will be extended during working days.

The announcement of these measures in Turkey has caused crowds in some supermarkets, specifically for the purchase of alcoholic beverages, since their sale in physical stores will be prohibited during the almost three weeks of restrictions. This prohibition will not only affect stores specializing in alcoholic beverages, but has also ordered the closure of the sale sections of these products in supermarkets.

During this period, travel between provinces has also been banned and urban public transport will operate at 50% of its capacity.

This prolonged total lockdown comes as Turkey experiences a reduction in the number of daily infections, from a peak of 65,000 a week ago to the current 40,000.


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