President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said late Wednesday he believes his country will slow the transmission of the new coronavirus within two or three weeks.
In a televised address to the nation, Erdoğan also expressed confidence that Turkey will overcome the coronavirus outbreak “in the shortest possible time,” also urging people to stay home and self-quarantine.
“We have preparations for every scenario,” the president said. “By breaking the speed of the virus’ spread in two to three weeks, we will get through this period as soon as possible with as little damage as possible.”
The country has so far reported 44 COVID-19 deaths and a total of 1,872 confirmed infections after conducting close to 28,000 tests.
Erdoğan also added that the country was monitoring a further 53,000 people at their homes and 8,554 other people in hospitals.
The novel coronavirus first emerged in Wuhan, China last December and has since spread to at least 169 countries and regions, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University in the U.S.
More than 400,000 confirmed cases have been recorded worldwide with the death toll surpassing 20,000, while over 100,000 have recovered.
Despite the rising number of cases, most who become infected suffer only mild symptoms and recover. The World Health Organization has declared the outbreak a pandemic.