Only those who have received coronavirus vaccinations will be able to travel to Mecca for the purpose of pilgrimage, the Saudi Arabian authorities announced.
Umrah begins in a few days. Saudi Arabian authorities warn that only vaccinated travelers can go on a small pilgrimage to Mecca from the beginning of Ramadan, which begins in mid-April. And the Hajj Ministry said that only those vaccinated would be allowed to perform ‘Umrah or prayers at the Great Mosque in Mecca.
At the same time, it is specified that to visit Mecca, it is necessary to receive two doses of the vaccine or one made within at least fourteen days preceding the trip.
As a rule, Ramadan attracts pilgrims from Saudi Arabia and other Muslim countries to Mecca. In March last year, the pilgrimage was suspended due to the Covid-19 pandemic. In early October, it was repeated, but with strict precautions.
Initially, only 6,000 Saudis and foreigners who live in Saudi Arabia were able to commit die daily. It can be performed throughout the year, in contrast to the Hajj, which is performed only once a year. Gradually, the number of pilgrims increased to 15,000 per day for the small hajj and up to 40,000 pilgrims for daily prayers in the Grand Mosque.
As of today, the country has recorded over 390,000 cases of Covid-19, of which about 6,700 have died. More than 5 million inhabitants, out of 34 million, received at least 1 dose of the vaccine.