ISTANBUL/ANKARA

Turkey has completed the first phase of its struggle against the novel coronavirus, the country’s health minister said on Wednesday.

The results of efforts to counter the virus, as well as success in diagnosis and treatment in the country, prove that Turkey has the pandemic under control, Fahrettin Koca told reporters after a Science Board Meeting.

On Tuesday, Koca said the number of ICU patients and those on ventilators continued to drop, with a total of 73,285 patients in Turkey having recovered so far from the coronavirus.

COVID-19 cases have been reported in 187 countries and regions since it emerged in China last December, with the US and Europe now the hardest-hit areas.

The pandemic has killed over 258,100 worldwide, with total infections over 3.68 million, while recoveries surpassed 1.21 million, according to figures compiled by the US’ Johns Hopkins University.

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