COVID-19: Saudi Arabia increases pilgrim capacity for Umrah during Ramadantext_fields
The Saudi Ministry of Hajj and Umrah has decided to raise the operational capacity of the Holy Mosque in Makkah during the month of Ramadan along with adhering to all precautionary measures and preventive measures issued by the competent authorities.
Umrah permits will be issued to 150,000 immunised people, those recovered from the coronavirus or received two jabs of COVID-19 vaccine or 14 days after receiving the first dose, through the two approved applications, Eatmarna and Tawakkalna. Those who are granted permission can also pay a visit to Masjid-an-Nabawi, Prophet's Mosque in Madinah.
From Ramadan 1, around 100,000 worshippers would be allowed to pray at the Masjid-al-Haram, Holy Mosque in Makkah, while 50,000 pilgrims will be allowed to perform Umrah, the General Presidency for the Affairs of the Two Holy Mosques said.
A Ramadan action plan was formulated which includes lessening the time of Tarawih (special night) prayer to half, closing the mosque within 30 minutes after Tarawih prayers and not granting permission for i'tikaaf (staying inside the mosque for several days, mainly in the last ten days of Ramadan). The Saudi Ministry of Islamic Affairs has also ordered the suspension of Iftar (meal for breaking fasts, after sunset) and Suhur (consumed before dawn) meals inside mosques or in any of their facilities. Authorities have cautioned against sharing or distributing meals at the mosque's courtyards and forbids all social gatherings.
The ministry warned against relying on fake websites and campaigns and to get permits issued only through Eatmarna and Tawakkalna.
Meanwhile, the Ministry of Health recorded 792 new cases on Tuesday, making total number of current Covid cases in the Kingdom to 394,169.