Saudi Arabia cancels 14-day waiting period between Umrah


Pilgrims who wish to perform Umrah in the holy city of Makkah will no longer be required to wait for 14 days to book for the ritual.

The Saudi Ministry of Hajj and Umrah has cancelled its earlier directive to impose a gap of 15 days between the performance of two Umrah pilgrimages, local media reported.

“Any pilgrim can now book an appointment to perform Umrah immediately after the expiry of an active Umrah permit through Eatmarna or Tawakkalna applications,” the ministry said.

Dr Amr Al-Maddah, chief of planning and strategy officer at the ministry, said that by easing preventive measures, the operational capacity of the Grand Mosque for Umrah and prayers has significantly increased.

Recently, the ministry had set a gap of 15 days between the issuance of two Umrah permits for pilgrims of all age groups.

The Grand Mosque in the holy city of Makkah, Saudi Arabia, has returned to operating at full capacity for the first time since the coronavirus pandemic began.

The leader of the Haramain Sharifain, Sheikh Abdul Rahman al-Sudais, has asked the authorities to make proper arrangement for the visiting believers.

50 new entrances to the Grand Mosque has also opened last week, according to the mosque administration, for pilgrims seeking to join others for Friday prayer.

The Grand Mosque’s inner courtyards and walkways will be sanitized on a regular basis to keep pilgrims safe.

More than 4,000 authorities, both men and women, have been assigned to supervise Friday prayers.

The use of a mask is required, and thermal cameras have been placed throughout the area to monitor those who may be infected.

Over 50,000 bottles of ZamZam water have also been distributed to worshippers at various locations throughout the Grand Mosque.

Visitors must, however, be properly vaccinated and continue to wear masks inside the mosque, according to officials.

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