JEDDAH: Any Ramadan gathering can lead to the spread of coronavirus, the Saudi Ministry of Health spokesman Dr. Mohammed Al-Abd Al-Aly said, as he reminded people about the importance of social distancing.
Ramadan is associated with family reunions over iftar and group prayers at mosques but, due to COVID-19, people are being urged to practice social distancing.
“As you all know, any socializing in the name of religion or family could create an opportunity for the virus to spread,”Al-Abd Al-Aly said as the fasting month got underway in the Kingdom.
The spokesman encouraged people with chronic diseases to speak to their doctors about fasting and how their medication intake worked with fasting hours.
A total of 1,172 new cases of COVID-19 were recorded in the Kingdom on Friday — 25 percent Saudis and 75 percent expats — bringing the total number of cases to 15,102. There are now 12,926 active cases, 93 of which are critical.
Al-Abd Al-Aly announced 124 new recovered cases, taking the total number of recoveries to 2,049. Six new deaths were reported, raising the death toll to 127.
The latest deaths were of two Saudis and four expats from Jeddah and Makkah. They were aged between 35 and 65 and had chronic diseases.
Al-Abd Al-Aly recalled King Salman’s words about Ramadan, in which he shared people’s longing to take part in Ramadan’s worshipping rituals but was thankful for them adhering to the preventive regulations in the hope that the pandemic would pass sooner rather than later.
Meanwhile, Saudis coming from Vienna arrived at Prince Naif bin Abdul Aziz International Airport in Qassim on Friday.
They were received upon arrival by officials. The flight carried Saudis repatriated from Austria, Slovakia, Slovenia, Czech Republic and Hungary.
All passengers from overseas must abide by a 14-day quarantine, according to the precautionary and preventive measures adopted by authorities to combat the pandemic.