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Turkey confirms 5th coronavirus case

Turkey confirmed three more coronavirus cases on Friday, raising the tally to five.

“After our first two cases, we confirmed three new cases who came into contact with them and were from the same family. All five cases are directly related,” said Health Minister Fahrettin Koca in a news conference in the capital Ankara.

Two of the patients have difficulty in breathing, Koca added.

Turkey banned flights to 14 countries as part of measures to stem the coronavirus outbreak, he said.

The official also reminded that Turkish citizens who visit foreign countries will have to take 14 days off from work and spend the time in self-isolation as of Monday.

Pregnant women and women on breast-feeding leave, people with disabilities and older than 60, except managers, will be allowed 12 days off from work and spend the time in self-isolation as of Monday, Koca added.

Visitors to hospitals will only be allowed after working hours and those visits too will be limited, the health minister said.

Addressing reporters alongside Koca, Transport and Infrastructure Minister Cahit Turhan said Turkey has added nine more European countries — Germany, France, Spain, Norway, Denmark, Belgium, Austria, Sweden and the Netherlands — in its list of flights suspended.

Flights from these countries will be suspended as of 08.00 a.m. (0500GMT) on Saturday, until April 17, Turhan said.

Earlier, Turkey suspended flights from China, Iran, Iraq, Italy, and South Korea.

The ministry is working for the disinfection of public transportation vehicles to prevent the spread of the COVID-19.

After emerging in Wuhan, China last December, the virus has spread to at least 123 countries and territories.

The global death toll is now nearly 5,000, with more than 132,500 confirmed cases, according to the World Health Organization, which declared the outbreak a pandemic.

A vast majority of those who become infected recover from the illness.

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