New Saudi currency will go into circulation on Dec. 26

Updated 15 December 2016

New Saudi currency will go into circulation on Dec. 26

RIYADH: The Kingdom’s newly designed currency will go into circulation on Dec. 26 in denominations of SR500, SR100, SR50, SR10 and SR5 with coins of different values including SR2 and SR1.
The new bills commemorating the era of Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman represent the sixth issue of Saudi banknotes and coins, which were launched on Tuesday night.
“The new banknotes and coins will be officially circulated by the Saudi Arabian Monetary Authority (SAMA) alongside existing banknotes and coins,” said Ahmed Alkholifey, SAMA governor, while speaking on the occasion of the release of the new legal tender on Tuesday.
Alkholifey said the issuance of the currency represents a bright picture of the economic development realized in different periods of the nation’s history.
The new bills have machine-readable security features to ensure the safety and authenticity of the currency and to safeguard it from forgery.
Alkholifey said that coins will gradually replace paper-based riyals because coin-based riyals have added advantages. In fact, “the life span of coins is estimated between 20 and 25 years compared to 12 to 18 months for paper banknotes based on conditions of their circulation,” said the SAMA chief.
The coin of SR1 has a silver picture of King Salman. On top of the coin, the Hijri year (1438) is written, while in the bottom the Gregorian year 2016 is written. The third coin of 50 halalas have also its value written in English and Arabic. The coin of 25 halalas, like other coins, the title of the king — Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques — is written with Arabic and English pointers for values.
The 10 halala coin has the Kingdom’s emblem above, and the title of Custodian of the Two Mosques is written in Arabic like other coins.


Worshippers flock to reopened Prophet’s Mosque for Friday prayers

Updated 06 June 2020

Worshippers flock to reopened Prophet’s Mosque for Friday prayers

MADINAH: Hundreds of thousands of worshippers attended the first Friday prayers to be held at the Prophet’s Mosque in Madinah since the gatherings were suspended to stop the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak.

The green light for the resumption of the prayer meetings came as part of a plan to gradually reopen the Kingdom’s mosques while ensuring worshippers and visitors adhered to preventive measures.

A ban on access to the Rawdah remained in place and only groups of worshippers numbering up to a maximum of 40 percent of the mosque’s capacity were being allowed entry.

Precautionary measures also included the allocation of specific doors for the entry of worshippers, the installation of thermal cameras, removal of all carpets so that prayers could be performed on the marble, sanitization of the mosque’s floors and courtyards, periodic opening of domes and canopies to ventilate the mosque, and the removal of Zamzam water containers.

The Prophet’s Mosque in Madinah will be closed after evening prayers and reopened one hour before dawn prayers. Parking lots will operate at 50 percent capacity and a media awareness campaign has been launched to highlight safety procedures at the holy site.

Medical teams have also been stationed at the main entrances to the mosque in cooperation with the Ministry of Health.

Elsewhere in the Kingdom, worshippers also flocked to perform Friday prayers at mosques amid strict health measures.

On May 31, Saudi authorities reopened all mosques for prayers, except in Makkah, as part of the Kingdom’s plan for a gradual return to normal life.

Last week the minister of Islamic affairs, dawah and guidance said that the country’s mosques were ready to welcome back worshippers, following his field trips to check that necessary preparations had been made.

All worshippers must still maintain a distance of 2 meters between rows, wear masks to enter a mosque, and Friday sermons and prayers have been limited to a maximum of 15 minutes.