Anadolu Agency is here with a rundown of the latest developments on the coronavirus pandemic and other news in Turkey and around the world.  

Coronavirus and other developments in Turkey

Turkey on Tuesday reported 19,256 coronavirus infections and 251 fatalities over the past 24 hours, according to Health Ministry data.

The new cases include 3,309 symptomatic patients and the total number of infections exceeded 2 million. A total of 32,110 people also recovered in the past day.

Amid a new coronavirus strain, Turkey isolated 335 people arriving from the UK, Denmark, the Netherlands and South Africa even if they tested negative for COVID-19, said Health Minister Fahrettin Koca.

Meanwhile, the number of COVID-19 patients under intensive care in hospitals has dropped by 25% in the Turkish metropolitan city of Istanbul, according to the governor.

Also on Tuesday, the Turkish Coast Guard rescued a total of 30 asylum seekers who were pushed back by Greek coastal authorities into Turkish territorial waters off the Aegean coast.

Turkey’s ruling party criticized a decision by Belgium’s lower house of parliament on Upper Karabakh, calling it “null and void.”

The ruling Justice and Development (AK) Party’s spokesman Omer Celik said Resolution 1597 related to Nagorno-Karabakh adopted by Belgium’s Chamber of Representatives is “unjust, unlawful, unfair and illegitimate.”

In the sports world, Turkish swimmer Merve Tuncel broke the world junior short track record in Istanbul on Tuesday.

COVID-19 updates worldwide

Taiwan has recorded its first locally transmitted coronavirus case since April, the Health Ministry said Tuesday, ending the world’s longest stretch without a domestic infection.

COVID-19 cases have also been reported in Antarctica, once the only continent not to be affected by the pandemic.

Meanwhile, the East African nation of Eritrea has recorded its first death from the novel coronavirus, its Information Ministry said Tuesday.

Italy reported 628 new deaths from the coronavirus Tuesday and 13,318 new cases, while the UK recorded its highest-ever daily rise in COVID-19 cases, according to government data.

Iraq also joined several countries that suspended air travel to and from the UK to contain the spread of a new variant of the novel coronavirus said to be more transmissible. The country suspended flights with seven more nations.

Other developments

The first direct commercial flight took off from Israel’s Ben Gurion Airport on Tuesday to Morocco, with outgoing US President Donald Trump’s son-in-law and adviser Jared Kushner on board.

Upon their arrival, Moroccan King Mohammed VI received the joint US-Israeli delegation to finalize a normalization deal between Tel Aviv and Rabat.

After police raided two Turkish companies’ garages Monday night, employees of the companies in Pakistan’s northeastern city of Lahore staged a protest Tuesday against the action.

In Armenia, opposition supporters took to the streets Tuesday, urging Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan to quit over the country’s embarrassing defeat in Karabakh.

Israel will hold a snap election in March after parliament failed Tuesday to meet a deadline for passing a budget.

The ruling Likud party headed by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and its coalition partner the Blue and White party led by Israeli Defense Minister Benny Gantz could not agree on the budget within the given period.​​​​​​

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