Turkey halted flights from nine European countries — Germany, France, Spain, Norway, Denmark, Belgium, Austria, Sweden and the Netherlands — as of Saturday morning until April 17 as part of efforts to contain the coronavirus.
The decision was announced by Turkish Transport Minister Mehmet Cahit Turhan on Friday. The Interior Ministry also published a circular on the issue and sent it to police departments in all 81 provinces.
Citizens of these nine countries and other foreign nationals who were in these countries over the past 14 days will not be allowed into Turkey as of 8 a.m. on March 14.
They will face no problems if they want to leave Turkey, while Turkish citizens will be temporarily banned from travelling to the nine countries.
Meanwhile, the Turkish Foreign Ministry announced on Saturday afternoon that Turkish citizens and tourists who are currently in the nine European countries will be allowed to enter Turkey until 23:59 p.m. on March 17.
World Health Organization officials announced on Friday that Europe has become the new epicenter of the COVID-19 pandemic as cases in China slow and the deadly coronavirus rages through Italy and nearby countries.
Turkey had earlier suspended flights to and from China, Iran, South Korea, Iraq, Italy and Iraq.