Coronavirus Pandemic

Covid-19: Saudi Arabia to hold Haj under strict guidelines


Last updated on May 9, 2021 at 10.56 pm

Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Haj and Umrah said on Sunday it would announce operational plans for this year’s Haj pilgrimage soon.

The Arab News quoted the ministry as saying that the details would be determined by Covid-19 health controls and standards.

The kingdom will ensure the health and safety of pilgrims and enable them to perform their rituals “easily and in a safe environment”, the Haj and Umrah ministry said.

The decision is “based on the kingdom’s constant keenness to enable the guests and visitors of the Grand Mosque and the Prophet’s Mosque to perform the rituals of Haj and Umrah”, the statement said, adding “the kingdom puts human health and safety first”.

The ministry said that Saudi health authorities are continuing to assess conditions and take all measures to ensure the preservation of human health.

Last year, the Haj that usually sees over 2.5 million Muslims travel to the holy city of Makkah, was curtailed for the first time in modern history to allow just 1,000 pilgrims to take part due to Covid-19. With borders closed due to coronavirus, only those inside Saudi Arabia were able to attend.