Saudi Arabia has temporarily suspended umrah for citizens and residents in the Kingdom, reported state news agency SPA citing “an official source” of the Ministry of Interior.
SPA said on Wednesday (Mar 4) the decision is among precautionary measures taken by Saudi Arabia’s government to limit the spread of the virus and prevent its access to the Masjid Al Haram in Makkah and Masjid Nabawi in Madinah.
It also comes in line with the precautionary measures taken by Saudi authorities to prevent the spread of the virus in the kingdom as a whole.
The decision to temporarily suspend umrah for citizens and residents in the country comes after umrah entries from abroad were stopped on Feb 27.
Other precautionary measures against the spread of COVID-19 that Saudi authorities have taken are to stop tourist visas from affected countries, and suspend the use of national identity cards for Saudi and GCC nationals to and from the Kingdom.
The Ministry of Health announced the country’s second confirmed case of the virus on Wednesday.
7,457,663 pilgrims performed the umrah during the 1440 Islamic year, equivalent to Sep 11, 2018 to Aug 2, 2019, according to data from the Saudi hajj ministry.
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