Turkey sends aid to help Niger fight coronavirus

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Turkey on Thursday sent medical supplies to Niger to help in the country's fight against the coronavirus outbreak.

A Turkish military cargo plane carrying medical equipment, including protective masks, safety goggles, and overalls, departed for the West African country early in the morning.

The medical aid was sent on the instructions of President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, and the boxes carried a message for the people of .

"After hopelessness, there is so much hope, and after darkness, there is a much brighter sun," it said, quoting the words of 13th century mystic poet Mevlana Rumi.

Earlier this week Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu and his Nigerien counterpart Kalla Ankourao discussed the pandemic over the phone.

Niger has a population of over 22 million and has recorded 961 COVID-19 cases so far, including 65 deaths and 857 recoveries, according to figures compiled by the US' Johns Hopkins University.

In May, the government lifted a curfew imposed in the capital Niamey since March and reopened all places of worship in the country.

Worldwide the pandemic has killed more than 386,000 people, with total infections in 188 countries and regions reaching over 6.51 million, while close to 2.81 million people have recovered.

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