ISTANBUL

Nothing will be the same after the post-coronavirus process, which is a new normalization, Turkey’s presidential spokesman said Sunday. 

“Let’s not forget that the post-coronavirus process is the new normal. The conditions, dynamics and parameters of the new normal are being built right now. Nothing will be the same,” Ibrahim Kalin said during a live streamed broadcast on YouTube.

Highlighting the importance of measures against COVID-19, Kalin said: “We will continue to live with these measures for a long time. We will continue to live with masks, pay attention to social distancing, not enter crowded environments, maybe work from home and avoid collective movements.”

Turkey will gradually take steps to start post-coronavirus normalization, he said, adding most probably certain measures will be taken for the Muslim Eid al-Fitr holiday marking the end of the holy fasting month of Ramadan.

Speaking on what has been experienced in the European Union amid the fight against the virus, Kalin said the course of the pandemic in Europe weakened the idea of the EU and the spirit of solidarity.

“If the necessary measures are not taken, discussions about the legitimacy of these institutions will gain speed thereafter,” he stressed.

Additionally, commenting on US President Donald Trump’s Chinese virus statement, Kalin said “it is a manifestation of long-standing trade wars between the US and China.”

Trump has insisted on describing COVID-19 as a “Chinese virus,” despite critics calling the label racist.

“Reducing a pandemic to an ethnic origin does not solve our problem. Being increasingly insensitive to such racist discourses, policies and attacks also normalizes the idea of racism. This is a very dangerous trend.” he added.

He went on to say that a big boom has been seen in arms sales, especially in the US, and some racist discourses and attitudes towards certain groups have been seen in certain places.

Touching on “very dangerous” developments in India, Kalin said: “For example, there have been accusations that the virus spread among Muslims in India because Muslims did not take the necessary precautions in their religious ceremonies.”

After originating in Wuhan, China last December, COVID-19 has spread to at least 188 countries and regions, with Europe and the US currently the worst hit.

The pandemic has killed more than 315,000 people worldwide, with more than 4.7 million confirmed cases, while recoveries have surpassed 1.7 million, according to figures compiled by Johns Hopkins University of the US.

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