ANKARA

The COVID-19 pandemic is laying bare the injustices faced by Western countries, said Turkey’s president on Sunday.

“Distortion and injustice in Western societies have become much more obvious, especially during the coronavirus pandemic,” Recep Tayyip Erdogan told a mass opening ceremony in the northwestern province of Kocaeli.

Decrying how people in some of the most-developed countries died from COVID-19 due to lack of access to basic healthcare services, he stressed that stoking Islamophobia will not rescue Western countries from this problem.

“We see that Western countries face serious problems not only with their social fabric and social peace but also economically,” he said.

Policies of hostility to Islam and xenophobia are of no help tackling such issues, Erdogan added.

“We are witnessing the mental misery under the veil of debauchery in Western countries, and how undeveloped countries are doomed to poverty,” he explained.

Erdogan has frequently decried rising Islamophobia in Western countries, including France, whose president recently announced measures to deal what he called “Islamist separatism.” Such misguided policies actually encourage Islamophobia and endanger Muslims, Erdogan argues.

Across the world, COVID-19 has claimed more than 1.25 million lives in 190 countries and regions since last December.

The US, India, and Brazil are currently the worst-hit countries.

Nearly 50 million cases have been reported worldwide, with over 32 million recoveries, according to figures compiled by the US’ Johns Hopkins University. 

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