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Saudi Arabia lifts nationwide COVID-19 restrictions

Saudi Arabia COVID-19 restrictions

Saudi Arabia has lifted the nationwide curfew and ended all Covid-19 related restrictions on economic and commercial activities that had been in place since late-March. Mosques in Mecca are also reopened on Sunday, following a three month closure. However, the ban on international flights and annual religious pilgrimage Hajj will continue.

The interior ministry gave permission to all the Public and Private businesses to resume their work but must follow the guidelines set by government officials.

International traveling along with sea and land borders commuters is still at halt according to ministry, but according to the spokesman of General Authority of Civil Aviation in a statement, they are constantly reviewing whether to open the international flights or wait for a little further.

Umrah and Hajj pilgrimage in Mecca and tourism are also paused. A strict policy will be implemented by authorities if someone does not follow the social distancing rule set by authorities. There is also a ban on the gathering of more than 50 people. Every citizen must wear masks whenever they leave their houses. Interior ministry also added that if someone violates these SOPs then they will be penalized.

“Lifting the nationwide Covid-19 restrictions in Saudi Arabia does not mean the coronavirus is gone, the virus is still outside, the pandemic is still there and till now there is no vaccine to cure people instantly. Although research is going on and we are very optimistic it will be found. A return to normal life is possible now but only if we follow the standard.” said the spokesman of Health Minister Mohammed al-Abd al-Ali.

Along with other activities, the mosques in Mecca are finally reopened from June 21 after being closed down for almost 3 months. There are reports that about 1,560 mosques in Makkah have been reopened.

In the second phase of easing the lockdown restrictions which were back in May around 90,000 mosques in the Kingdom opened their gates for prayers. In that phase, domestic flight operation was also resumed along with restaurants and cafes.

The total tally of coronavirus cases in Saudi Arabia has crossed 157,612 and the death toll has reached 1,267. Total recovered coronavirus patients in the Kingdom are 101,130. The current active cases of coronavirus patients are 55,215 and among them, 2,027 are in critical condition.

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