President Mustafa Akinci signed the “Infectious Diseases (Amendment) Law”, which was unanimously accepted in the ninth extraordinary meeting of the General Assembly on 17 September. The amendment was published in the Official Gazette.
The details of the amendment law prepared because of the spike in Covid-19 cases, various rules such as wearing a mask, complying with social distance and quarantine were agreed and penalties of “fines, quarantine and imprisonment” were issued.
In accordance with the amended articles of the law, those who do not comply with the mask wearing and/or social distance rules will be subject to an administrative fine of one tenth of the monthly gross minimum wage.
This figure is 382 TL as of today.
Those who do not comply with the isolation rule or who do not comply with the quarantine rules having made a written undertaking to do so, will have committed a crime and in case of convictions, they will be fined five times the monthly gross minimum wage. 3,820 TL or they could face up to one year of imprisonment, or both.
Those who do not comply with the rule – “Authorities responsible for communal living areas, owners of businesses, workplaces and places of entertainment and organizers of events are obliged to comply with the decisions determined by the law, to ensure compliance and to take the necessary precautions” a fine will be imposed equal to the monthly gross minimum wage and premises will be closed for 24 hours; meetings and events will be halted immediately.
Increased Penalties for Nonpayment Within 30 Days
Those who do not pay the administrative fines stipulated by law within 30 days, will have committed a criminal offence and in case of conviction, they may be sentenced to pay a fine of up to six times the monthly gross minimum wage or given a prison sentence of up to one year or both.
Persons who know or should know that they have a dangerous infectious disease as described by the Council of Ministers, will have committed a crime if they act in a way that threatens public health and will be sentenced to a fine of up to five times the monthly gross minimum wage or imprisonment up to one year or both.
Penalties For Unauthorised Reopening of Business Premise
The law also includes severe penalties for those who act against a decision to close down business premises. Those in transgression of the law, if convicted, may be sentenced to a fine of up to five times the monthly gross minimum wage or a prison sentence of up to one year, or both.