Smoking will no longer be allowed on crowded streets and other public areas in Turkey starting Thursday, officials have announced.

In a circular to the governors of the country’s 81 provinces, the Interior Ministry declared Wednesday that a smoking ban would be introduced in “areas like avenues, streets and stops where citizens are crowded.”

The circular also included new measures against the novel coronavirus pandemic, including a stay-home order for people over 65 years old between 10.00 a.m. and 4.00 p.m., local time.

Turkey has so far reported more than 402,000 COVID-19 cases, while over 344,000 of the patients have recovered from the disease which has claimed 11,613 lives in the country.

*Writing by Handan Kazanci

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