The 31st Ankara International Film Festival was postponed as part of measures against the novel coronavirus, which has so far claimed 277 lives in Turkey.

According to an official statement, the 11-day event was scheduled to begin on June 4, with 1,278 movies having applied to take part in the festival.

However, the organizers decided to postpone it to prevent the spread of the disease, known as COVID-19.

There are currently 15,679 confirmed coronavirus cases in Turkey.

After first appearing in the Chinese city of Wuhan in December, the virus has spread to at least 180 countries and regions.

Read more: Turkey: Ankara int'l film fest postponed over virus