Barricades around Kaaba lifted after two years with start of new Umrah seasontext_fields
JEDDAH: With the start of the new Umrah season, Saudi Arabia has decided to remove defensive barriers around the Holy Kaaba after two years, allowing worshipers to touch the House of Allah once again.
The decision was announced by Sheikh Dr Abdulrahman Al-Sudais, who heads the General Presidency of the affairs of the Two Holy Mosques, on Tuesday.
Barricades were put in place to ensure social distancing among pilgrims.
To prevent the spread of Covid-19, the area around the Kaaba, where pilgrims circumambulate seven times, was closed in March 2020 for sterilization as a precautionary measure, Arab News reported.
Al Sudais said the decision demonstrates the Saudi leadership's concern for visitors to the Grand Mosque and its commitment to facilitate their rituals in a safe and spiritual environment as the number of worshippers to the grand mosque increased as the Umrah season began.
He said that in line with the aspirations of the country's leadership, the Presidency is cooperating with all sectors working at the Grand Mosque to receive pilgrims and provide all necessary services.
He thanked King Salman and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman for their care, attention and support of the Two Holy Mosques. He prayed that Allah blesses them for their good deeds.
The General Presidency of the Affairs of the Two Holy Mosques informed that the preparations to provide services following the crowd management plans have started early and the Grand Mosque of Makkah and its courtyards have been prepared to facilitate the Umrah rituals for the pilgrims with ease and tranquillity.