Minister of Health, Dr. Fahrettin Koca, delivered a statement following the Coronavirus Scientific Committee meeting.
Before starting his speech, Koca greeted everyone and said, "I would like to wish you all a happy Eid al-Adha. May Allah allow us to celebrate many more Eid al-Adha's together with our loved ones. I hope that we will be able to hug and embrace one another next year. What suits the spirit of Eid al-Adha is that we spend the holiday in social solidarity. As you may agree, this also means that we need to stand in solidarity against the pandemic. As we do good, we need to keep the disease under control.”
"Limit the time spent at animal sales areas"
Minister Koca listed the measures for Eid al-Adha:"Sacrificial animals should only be purchased from areas designated and supervised by municipalities. Time spent at these areas must be limited. Customers and salespeople must not shake hands. People over the age of 65 and those with chronic illnesses must not go to animal sales or slaughter areas. Sacrificial animals must only be slaughtered in areas designated by municipalities.
"Everyone should take their own prayer rug to friday prayers and the salat al-eid"
Reminding that the salat al-eid and friday prayers will be performed in congregation, Koca listed the measures to take during these prayers: "We should ablute at home. Otherwise, it may become impossible to maintain social distance and wear a mask. Everyone should bring their own prayer rug to friday prayers and the salat al-eid. Virus can easily spread via carpets or prayer rugs during sajdah. The virus remains alive outdoors for a while and can spread to others. It is important to maintain distance with others during prayer. Outdoors must be preferred as much as possible instead of indoors."
"The success of measures is crystal clear"
"Abandoning eid traditions is a way to serve health", said Minister Koca and continued, "10 days after the Eid Al-Adha, the number of new cases decreased by 15% thanks to all the restrictions. During the same period, the number of new intubated patients decreased by 21%, the number of new ICU patients by 19% and the number of new hospitalized patients by 8%. The number of deaths decreased by 29%. The success of measures is crystal clear."
Noting that the fight against the pandemic was possible with the participation of the whole nation, Koca added,"We are grateful for our nation. The Turkish people realize that they are contributing to the economy, education, manufacturing, etc. by following the measures. There are now more reasons to fight for."
Koca also added that the Scientific Board was discussing to change some titles in the daily coronavirus dashboard for ease of international comparison.