Anadolu Agency is here with a rundown of the latest developments in Turkey, around the world and the coronavirus pandemic.
– Developments in Turkey, coronavirus pandemic and other news
Turkey has administered more than 74.33 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines since it launched a mass vaccination campaign in January, according to figures released Wednesday. The Health Ministry also confirmed 26,822 new infections and 122 coronavirus-related deaths in the last 24 hours, while as many as 6,096 more patients recovered.
Forest fires are a global threat just like the COVID-19 pandemic, Turkey’s president said Wednesday. The whole world is currently facing this challenge, which is like a “terrorist threat,” Recep Tayyip Erdogan said in a live television interview.
He said 187 forest fires have erupted in Turkey in the past eight days, with 15 of them yet to be put out. Some 51 helicopters and 20 planes are engaged in operations to douse the wildfires, the president said. He added that Turkish intelligence and police personnel are thoroughly investigating the fires.
People whose homes have been damaged in the ongoing wildfires will be given new houses within one year at the latest, Turkey’s foreign minister said Wednesday.
A second firefighting team from Azerbaijan arrived Wednesday in Turkey to help with massive forest fires in southern provinces that have led to deaths and injuries.
A power plant in Turkey’s southwestern Mugla province was evacuated Wednesday due to a forest fire in the area.
– Worldwide developments related to COVID-19
The number of COVID-19 vaccine shots administered worldwide surpassed 4.25 billion Wednesday, according to Our World in Data, a tracking website affiliated with Oxford University.
The World Health Organization is calling for a freeze on booster jabs against COVID-19 until the end of September to enable at least 10% of the global population to get vaccinated, the WHO chief said Wednesday.
The US on Wednesday rebuffed a call from the World Health Organization (WHO) to impose a worldwide coronavirus booster shot moratorium, saying it presents “a false choice.”
First doses of COVID-19 vaccines will now be offered to all 16- and 17-year-olds in the UK, authorities announced Wednesday.
– Developments across the world
The Israeli army said three rockets were fired from Lebanon into northern Israel on Wednesday. A military statement said two rockets landed inside Israel, while the third fell inside Lebanon. The army said Israeli forces fired artillery shells into Lebanon in response to the rocket fire.
A major fire continued to burn through the forest of Varibobi in Greece’s Attica region on Wednesday, despite persistent efforts by authorities and local volunteers to contain the blaze.
The US on Wednesday walked back remarks from senior officials regarding Afghan refugee flows amid a diplomatic row with Turkey and voiced regret about the comments.
State Department spokesman Ned Price said Washington “did not intend to single out any particular country as a destination for refugees.”
“We do regret the concerns that statements have raised regarding the potential travel of Afghans to Turkey, and we reiterate our gratitude to Turkey for its substantial humanitarian efforts in hosting over 4 million refugees, more than any other country in the world,” Price told reporters during a news conference.
Security forces clashed with protesters in Lebanon’s capital Wednesday on the first anniversary of last year’s deadly port blast.
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