Saudi Health Minister Dr Tawfiq Al-Rabiah said that Saudi Arabia will enforce several strict health measures and protocols for the upcoming Hajj pilgrimage in an effort to prevent the deadly coronavirus from spreading,
Addressing a joint virtual press conference with Minister for Hajj and Umrah Dr Muhammad Saleh, the Minister of Hajj expected that number of domestic pilgrims performing the pilgrimage this year will not be more than 10,000.
He confirmed that no pilgrims from outside the Saudi state would be allowed to perform the Hajj this year.
Dr Tawfiq Al-Rabiah said that pilgrims should be under 65 years of age and should not be suffering from any chronic disease.
— Saudi Gazette (@Saudi_Gazette) June 23, 2020
Earlier, officials had said that the Hajj, which is one of the five pillars of Islam and is necessary for Muslims at least once in their lives, would be limited to a “limited number” from within the state this year.
Every year, about 2.5 million pilgrims visit the holiest sites of Islam in Makkah and Madinah.
To prevent the spread of the coronavirus among pilgrims, the Ministry of Health, in collaboration with the Ministry of Hajj and Umrah, has developed a plan to ensure the safety of all pilgrims.
The Minister of Hajj and Umrah said that they have worked with the Ministry of Health to develop precautionary measures and protocols that are necessary to ensure a safe Hajj season.
The protocols mandatory for Hajj,
- More than 10,000 pilgrims will not be allowed to perform Hajj.
- All pilgrims will be tested before reaching the holy sites.
- This year, people under the age of 65 will be allowed to perform Hajj.
- All pilgrims will be asked to quarantine themselves after performing Hajj.
- All servants and volunteers will be tested before the start of the Hajj.
- The health of the pilgrims will be monitored daily.
- Hospitals will be fully prepared for any emergency during the Hajj.
- Social distance orders will be implemented.