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Saudi Arabia opens Umrah pilgrimage to vaccinated foreigners

  • Published at 01:30 pm August 8th, 2021
Pilgrims keeping social distance perform their Umrah in the Grand Mosque during the annual Haj pilgrimage, in the holy city of Mecca, Saudi Arabia on Saturday, July 17, 2021 Reuters

Pilgrims from countries on Saudi Arabia's no-entry list will be subject to institutional quarantine upon arrival

Saudi Arabia will gradually begin receiving Umrah pilgrimage requests from abroad for vaccinated pilgrims starting Monday after about a year and a half of not receiving overseas worshippers due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the state news agency (SPA) reported early on Sunday.

With a capacity that would rise to 2 million pilgrims from 60,000 pilgrims per month, Mecca and Medina will start welcoming visitors from abroad to their mosques while maintaining Covid-19 precautionary measures.

An official in the Hajj and Umrah Ministry said domestic and overseas pilgrims will have to include authorized Covid-19 vaccination certificates along with their Umrah request.

Also Read - Saudi Arabia to allow foreign pilgrims for Umrah from August 10

Vaccinated pilgrims from countries that Saudi Arabia includes on its entry-ban list will have to be institutionally quarantined upon arrival, the report added.

Umrah, a pilgrimage to Islam's two holiest sites that is undertaken at any time of the year, was reopened in October for domestic worshippers after it was totally upon the outbreak of the pandemic.

Islam's holiest sites' home for the second year in a row had hosted a limited-numbered, domestic Hajj pilgrimage in July.