Saudi Arabia has announced that the country will go ahead with Hajj 2020 despite the COVID-19 pandemic with a limited number of pilgrims of various nationalities living in the kingdom. The announcement by the Saudi kingdom said that the international Hajj had been cancelled in view of the global pandemic.
The statement released by the Saudi Ministry of Hajj and Umrah said, “The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, whose top priority is to always to enable Muslim pilgrims to perform Hajj and Umrah rites safely and securely and which has been keen since the beginning of the pandemic to take all necessary precautionary measures to protect pilgrims, including by suspending the entry of Umrah pilgrims while ensuring the safety of the pilgrims already present at the holy sites, a decision that has received many approbations from Islamic international organizations in recognition of its wide contribution to fighting the virus globally and supporting the efforts of health organizations in limiting the spread of the deadly disease.”
— Foreign Ministry 🇸🇦 (@KSAmofaEN) June 22, 2020
The statement said that the Hajj ‘this year (1441 H/ 2020 AD) will be held whereby a very limited number of pilgrims from various nationalities who already reside in Saudi Arabia, would be able to perform it. This decision is taken to ensure Hajj is performed in a safe manner from a public health perspective while observing all preventative measures and the necessary social distancing protocols to protect human beings from the risks associated with this pandemic and in accordance with the teachings of Islam in preserving the lives of human beings.’
Around 25 lakh pilgrims had performed Hajj last year. However, the Saudi authorities had announced a ban on Umrah in March this year after the COVID-19 pandemic assumed alarming proportions across the globe.