By Emin Avundukluoglu
ANKARA (AA) - The Turkish parliament delayed centennial anniversary events due to the coronavirus pandemic, the speaker said on Wednesday.
"The events we have planned on the occasion of the 100th anniversary of the inauguration of the Turkish Grand National Assembly have been delayed," Mustafa Sentop said in a statement.
Sentop noted that the events have been delayed due to "difficulties to keep social distance" amid coronavirus outbreak.
"I believe Turkey and the world will win the fight [against the novel coronavirus known as COVID-19] and the daily life will flow fluently," said Sentop.
We will celebrate the centennial anniversary with more enthusiasm after the threat of the outbreak ends, he added.
The assembly met for the first time in Ankara on April 23, 1920, during the War of Independence to lay the foundations for an independent, secular and modern republic.
Turkey has so far 1,872 confirmed cases of coronavirus pandemic, with the death toll at 44, according to the Health Ministry.
After first appearing in Wuhan, China last December, the novel coronavirus has spread to at least 171 countries and territories. The World Health Organization has declared the outbreak a pandemic.
The number of confirmed cases worldwide has now surpassed 435,000 while the death toll is over 19,500 and more than 111,500 have recovered.
Despite the rising number of cases, most who contract the virus suffer only mild symptoms before making a recovery.