Saudi Arabia’s Hajj and Umrah minister tells Muslims to wait for coronavirus clarity on pilgrimage

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Saudi Arabia has asked Muslims to wait for more clarity on the coronavirus pandemic before planning any travel for pilgrimage, minister for Hajj and Umrah has said. (SPA)
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Saudi Arabia has asked Muslims to wait for more clarity on the coronavirus pandemic before planning any travel for pilgrimage, minister for Hajj and Umrah has said. (SPA)
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Saudi Arabia has asked Muslims to wait for more clarity on the coronavirus pandemic before planning any travel for pilgrimage, minister for Hajj and Umrah has said. (SPA)
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Saudi Arabia has asked Muslims to wait for more clarity on the coronavirus pandemic before planning any travel for pilgrimage, minister for Hajj and Umrah has said. (SPA)
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Updated 01 April 2020

Saudi Arabia’s Hajj and Umrah minister tells Muslims to wait for coronavirus clarity on pilgrimage

  • The largest annual gathering of Muslims is scheduled to begin in late July

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia has asked Muslims to wait for more clarity on the coronavirus pandemic before planning any travel for pilgrimage, the minister for Hajj and Umrah told Al-Ekhbariya TV on Tuesday.

"We've asked the world not to rush with regards to Hajj groups until the path of the epidemic becomes clear, keeping in mind the safety of pilgrims and public health as a priority,"Dr. Muhammad Salih bin Taher Banten said.

"We have coordinated with the Ministry of Health an inspection tour of hotels that were used for health isolation to ensure that all services and care are provided to pilgrims," he added.

The largest annual gathering of Muslims is scheduled to begin in late July, but the coronavirus outbreak and Saudi Arabia’s lockdown to prevent the spread of the virus has raised questions about whether it can go ahead.

The Kingdom has already suspended Umrah pilgrimage until further notice, halted all international passenger flights indefinitely and last week blocked entry and exit to several cities, including Makkah and Madinah.

There have been 10 deaths reported among 1,563 cases of coronavirus in Saudi Arabia, which has infected some 800,000 people globally and killed more than 40,000.


Saudi FM discusses enhanced bilateral cooperation with Cypriot counterpart

Updated 26 September 2020

Saudi FM discusses enhanced bilateral cooperation with Cypriot counterpart

RIYADH: Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan bin Abdullah made several phone calls with his counterparts from other nations.

He discussed Saudi-Cypriot relations with Nikos Christodoulides, the Cypriot minister of foreign affairs, stressing the need to strengthen mutual cooperation in various fields, and discussing regional and international developments of common interest

Prince Faisal also spoke separately to Ine Marie Eriksen Søreide, Norway’s minister of foreign affairs; to Linas Linkevičius, minister of foreign affairs for Lithuania; and to Edgars Rinkēvičs, Latvia’s minister of foreign affairs.

With all three, the prince discussed bilateral relations and cooperation, in addition to regional and global matters of mutual interest to Saudi Arabia and their respective countries.