Turkey on Monday announced that it suspended flights from six countries as part of measures against the COVID-19 pandemic. 

In a circular issued by Turkish Interior Ministry, the country suspended flights from Bangladesh, Brazil, South Africa, India, Nepal, and Sri Lanka as of July 1 and until further notice.

The ministry noted that the course of the pandemic in some countries showed a recent escalation due to the new variants of the COVID-19 virus.

In accordance with the Health Ministry’s recommendations, Turkey decided to shut down its borders for any direct entries including through land, air, sea or railway from these countries.

The people arriving at Turkey from another country after having been in one of these countries in the last 14 days will be required to provide a negative COVID-19 test result conducted in the last 72 hours.

They will also be quarantined at places determined by local governorates for 14 days, at the end of which a negative test will be required one more time.

In case of a positive test result, the patient will be kept under isolation, which will end with a negative result in the following 14 days.

The ministry’s circular added that passengers arriving at Turkey from the UK, Iran, Egypt, and Singapore would be required to have a negative COVID-19 test result obtained in the last three days.

Of the people coming to Turkey from countries other than Bangladesh, Brazil, South Africa, India, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Afghanistan, Pakistan, the UK, Iran, Egypt and Singapore, those who can provide a document showing the administering of a COVID-19 vaccine in the last 14 days or recovery from COVID-19 infection in the last six months will not be required a test result or quarantined.

A negative COVID-19 test result conducted in the last 72 hours before arriving at Turkey or a negative rapid antigen test conducted within maximum 48 hours after their arrival will suffice for those failing to provide the documents.

It will be possible to have a sampling-based COVID-19 test for passengers incoming from all border gates.

* Writing by Dilan Pamuk in Ankara

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