Spain accused Turkey of blocking coronavirus medical supplies

6 April 2020
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The Spanish government has accused Turkey of blocking the delivery of vital medical supplies urgently needed to combat the novel coronavirus in Spain, according to Spanish newspapers El Pais and El Mundo.

The medical supplies including ventilators and sanitary equipment was to be shipped to Spain but remained at Turkish customs due to Ankara’s restrictions on the export of medical devices, according to El Pais.

Spanish Foreign Minister Arancha Gonzalez Laya said during a press conference on Friday that Spain had not received the ventilators it had purchased after Turkey “decided to keep them in case they need them in their battle against the coronavirus.”

El Mundo reported that the ventilators were made in Turkey on behalf of a Spanish company with components it had bought from China.

Emiliano Garcia-Page, president of Castilla-La Mancha, one of the regions in Spain that had purchased the ventilators, said Turkey has “unilaterally decided to requisition” the 150 ventilators it had already paid €3m for.

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