Turkey tops Europe for COVID-19 infections as cases reach record high

COVID-19 cases in Turkey hit a daily 49,584 on Tuesday, the highest figure since the beginning of the pandemic.

Daily infections have doubled in a little over two weeks, meaning Turkey now tops European countries for daily infections and ranks second worldwide after India, according to data provided by Worldometer.

The total number of cases in the country of 85 million rose to 3.58 million on Tuesday, the Health Ministry said. It reported 211 new fatalities in the last 24 hours, pushing up the death toll to 32,667.

Infections in Turkey have surged after the authorities eased restrictions on the population on March 1, when daily cases stood at less than 10,000. The authorities lifted weekend lockdowns in areas deemed at low and medium risk and allowed restaurants and cafes to reopen, including in Istanbul, the country’s largest city. Some of the curbs have now been reinstated.

Turkey began a mass vaccination campaign on Jan. 14.  Since then, 10.35 million people have received a first dose of the jab, while 7.33 million second doses have been administrated, according to the Health Ministry.

The government evaluates a full lockdown during the first 21 days of the Ramadan that begins on April 13th.