Dubai, Saudi Arabia’s largest religious gathering, is considering canceling the Hajj. This is the first time that more than 100,000 pandemic cases have been filed in the country ahead of Saturday’s Financial Times report.
The Hajj and Umrah Ministry told the Financial Times that the state is looking at the situation from different angles. The government will make a decision within a week. The minister added that he has full authority over the table, but he put the health and safety of the pilgrims above everything else.
But Saudi Arabia has a different strategy. The ministry is considering allowing at least a percentage of pilgrims from each country to perform the Hajj this year. Two Saudi officials told Reuters they could allow 20 percent of pilgrims from each country to perform the Hajj with restrictions.
Although the Decision will be made next week, the second decision is likely to be made after that, as many countries have postponed sending their citizens to the Great Prayer.
The Indonesian government has refused to participate in the Hajj. He believes that Saudi Arabia does not give guarantees. Overall, an average of 220,000 Indonesians goes on Hajj annually.
In addition, the Indian Hajj Commission stated that the possibility of sending Indians to the Hajj is very small. Refunds have been announced to those who will not be sent to the Hajj.
On the other hand, Singapore made a similar decision with Indonesia.
This will have a negative impact on the country’s economy due to the abolition of the Hajj, as Saudi Arabia earns 12 billion annually from the Hajj and Umrah. The current government plans to revise its plan for religious tourism to attract 30 million pilgrims annually by 2030.
The hajj season will end in July this year. Despite this, Saudi Arabia asked to stay at home as the decision to hold a religious meeting was postponed.
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Saudi Arabia has confirmed 123,000 cases of COVID-19, of which 932 have died. Meanwhile, 82 thousand patients were diagnosed with infectious diseases.
More than 700,000 people have contracted the coronavirus and 430,000 have died worldwide, with 4 million people currently recovering from the virus.