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Turkey's US embassy denies virus patient visited Turkey

Turkey's US embassy denies virus patient visited Turkey
Records 'revealed' patient flew from Albania to US 'via a brief stopover in Istanbul Airport,' Turkish Embassy says

By Michael Hernandez

WASHINGTON (AA) - An 86-year-old woman in the American state of Maryland who has tested positive for the new coronavirus did not travel in Turkey, Ankara's U.S. Embassy said Tuesday.

Turkish authorities made the determination following a thorough investigation, the embassy said in a brief statement.

Turkish records "have revealed" the patient "did not visit Turkey, but flew from Tirana, Albania, to Dulles International Airport, on March 3rd, via a brief stopover in Istanbul Airport, where she spent her entire time in the transit lounge," the embassy said. "We wish her a speedy and full recovery."

The comments come one day after Maryland Governor Larry Hogan said the victim, one of two new cases in the state, "contracted the virus while traveling to Turkey."

The Harford County woman is currently hospitalized in Maryland.

Earlier in the day, Turkish Health Minister Fahrettin Koca dismissed the reports that the elderly U.S. woman tested positive for the virus after visiting Turkey.

"In records from the last two weeks, there is only one 86-year-old female U.S. national. She did not visit Turkey. On March 3, she was on a connecting flight from Tirana [Albania] to Washington via Istanbul," Koca said on Twitter.

No cases of the virus have been confirmed in Turkey.

source: News Feed
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