TURKEY MARKS LABOR DAY IN SHADOW OF PANDEMIC

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ANKARA – Turkey‘s president and top officials on Saturday marked Labor and Solidarity Day. “I congratulate my fellow workers, who make our country grow while breaking a sweat, on May 1 Labor and Solidarity Day,” President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said on Twitter, sharing the link of his message marking the day issued on Friday.

Vice President Fuat Oktay greeted workers and laborers who “make the greatest contribution to the growth and development of our country,” on Twitter.

Communications Director Fahrettin Altun also took Twitter to mark the day, saying: “We have been with our fellow workers with all our strength until today and we will continue to stand by them from now on.”

Interior Minister Süleyman Soylu marked the day with a message.

“We congratulate all our workers who add value to this country with their efforts,” Soylu said.

May Day or International Workers’ Day first emerged as an event commemorating the labor of workers worldwide on May 1, 1886, when a group of workers in the US held a massive strike for an eight-hour workday.

Turkey’s first official May Day celebrations were held in 1923.

As a public health measure to fight the virus, Turkey started a complete lockdown starting Thursday evening and lasting until May 17.

The lockdown will cover the remainder of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, as well as three days of the Eid al-Fitr holiday.