Elderly in Turkey go outside for first time since March

INSTANBUL: Turkish people aged 65 and over on Sunday (May 10) described their joy after the government allowed them to go outside for the first time in nearly two months in an easing of the coronavirus restrictions.

While 24 provinces including Ankara and Istanbul are subject to a weekend lockdown, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said last week senior citizens could leave their homes between 8am and 12pm GMT on Sunday.

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They had not been permitted to go outside since Mar 21.

"Finally it is like we are on holiday as of 11 o'clock today. We are very happy," Istanbul resident Umit Avci, 81, said.

"It's the first time I've come outside since March and I'm so happy, I'm filled with joy," Ankara resident Ayse said.

Minutes before the official start, people in masks, and some in gloves, were walking on the streets in Ankara where the sun was shining and spring was in full bloom.

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Small parks in the capital were later packed with senior citizens, while police in one park walked around and used loudspeakers urging people to follow social distancing rules.

Some senior citizens called on the government to allow them to go out on weekdays when there is no lockdown.

"What can we do now? Everywhere is closed, we cannot do anything. They should take this into consideration," Saim Ilker said in Istanbul.

The measure restricting senior citizens' movement was one of many taken by the Turkish government to stop the spread of the coronavirus including shutting schools.

Sunday's decision was the first to ease restrictions, with barbershops, hairdressers and shopping centres set to reopen on Monday as the dailRead More – Source