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Saudi Arabia Easing Covid-19 Restrictions, But Hajj & Umrah Still Suspended

Saudi Arabia Easing Covid-19 Restrictions, But Hajj & Umrah Still Suspended

Akmal Hakim

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Saudi Arabia will gradually begin easing its Covid-19 lockdown restrictions.

Restrictions will be lifted in 3 stages starting on May 31, and the kingdom expects to end its countrywide curfews by mid June.

Saudi citizens would soon be free to travel across the country, attend congregational prayer activities at places of worship as well as get back to work and re-open businesses.

The government would also be reopening the holy city of Mecca, albeit under a slightly different set of rules, only allowing the public to gradually move about freely and access public spaces between 6am and 8pm.

However, the Al-Masjid al-Ḥaram or the Great Mosque would still remain closed to the public and the country still maintains its current suspension on the annual Hajj and Umrah pilgrimages.

In late March Saudi Arabia imposed travel restrictions and strict 24-hour curfews across the kingdom in efforts to contain the spread of Covid-19, which included the shutdown of its two holy mosques in Mecca and Medina.

brown beach umbrella
The Al Masjid an Nabawi in Medina, Saudi Arabia is considered the 2nd holiest site in Islam.
(Credit: said alamri/Unsplash)

As of writing, the country had recorded over 78,000 positive Covid-19 cases and more than 400 deaths.


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