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


Turkey continues its fight against the COVID-19 outbreak as the country registered less than 1,000 cases Friday and total recoveries topped 199,000. The death toll stands at 5,458 in Turkey, which has conducted more than 4.19 million tests.

It repatriated four citizens Friday from Kyrgyzstan for COVID-19 treatment.

Turkish security forces arrested at least two YPG/PKK terrorists in northern Syria, across Turkey’s southern border, according to the Turkish Defense Ministry.

Also, the National Intelligence Organization rescued Moldovan national Natalia Barkal and her four children from YPG/PKK terrorists in northern Syria.

The family was stuck in the al-Hawl Camp since the beginning of 2019 because of ongoing clashes in the war-stricken country, security sources said on condition of anonymity. 

Turkishs President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said converting Hagia Sophia to a mosque was a matter of “sovereignty.”

Erdogan said Turkey will never leave Azerbaijan “alone” following an attack by Armenia. 


Since originating in China last December, the COVID-19 pandemic has claimed more than 601,000 lives in 188 countries and regions.

More than 14 million cases have been reported worldwide, while an excess of 7.8 million patients have recovered, according to figures compiled by US-based Johns Hopkins University.

Foreign ministers from Mexico, Indonesia, South Korea, Turkey and Australia held a meeting Friday via videoconferencing to discuss ways to combat the novel coronavirus.

Indian health officials said coronavirus cases have exceed 1 million.

Nigeria registered more than 590 new cases, bringing its tally to over 34,850.

As COVID-19 spreads beyond the control of contact tracers in the Barcelona metropolitan area, the Catalan government asked residents to stay home whenever possible. 

Australia’s southern Victoria state reported 428 new coronavirus cases, the highest daily infection number since the beginning of the pandemic, local media reported.

China imposed a strict lockdown in its Xinjiang autonomous region, home to Uighur Muslims, after six new case were reported, according to local media.

Latin America continues to suffer from the outbreak, with cases in Brazil surpassing 2 million, according to latest reports. Argentina, Peru and Colombia also registered more cases and deaths.

The number of coronavirus cases in Southeast Asian countries increased to 206,629 Friday, including 5,883 fatalities and 119,391 recoveries.  

South Africa is now the sixth worst-hit country in terms of cases.

South Africa registered more than 130 deaths, bringing that number to 4,804 while more than 178,180 patients have recovered.

Many other countries such as Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Azerbaijan, Moldova, Belarus and Tajikistan also reported new coronavirus-related cases and deaths.

Crude oil prices were down Friday, with rising COVID-19 cases around the world sustaining weak global demand.  

Developments around world 

As violence surges across the country, Afghan security forces said at least 72 Taliban militants, including four top commanders, were killed in operations in three provinces.

The daughter of global icon and South Africa’s first black President Nelson Mandela was laid to rest.

Zindzi Mandela, 59, died early Monday.

The Nigerian military said it rescued 32 kidnapped people from “criminal elements” in Benue state.

Investments in tourism dropped by $3 trillion worldwide in 2020 due to the pandemic, according to the World Tourism Forum Institute.

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