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Turkey hopes to lure tourists from 70 countries for ‘corona-free’ summer vacation

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With its tourism sector one of the hardest hit by the COVID-19 outbreak, Turkey has launched a “diplomacy of letters,” contacting 70 countries to assure them about safety of its shores for a summer vacation.

Last week Tourism Minister Mehmet Nuri Ersoy announced a certification system indicating that Turkey is a safe place for tourism with adequate infrastructure for health support and appropriate measures against the infection.

“Turkey is acting responsibly in all these areas, not only for the health of our citizens, but also for our guests to ensure that they can spend their holidays in peace,” Ersoy said, according to the state-run Anadolu news agency.

The country had also sent letters of intent to those 70 countries – which have preferred Turkey as a tourist destination in recent years — including Germany, the UK, the Netherlands, Belgium, Japan, Russia and the Czech Republic.

The letters included information on measures taken in facilities and in transportation, and a list of provincial and district-level health institutions and their capabilities, the minister added.

Turkey has nearly 150,000 COVID-19 cases, with a death toll of 4,140.

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