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Saudi Arabia considers limiting haj pilgrims amid COVID-19 fears

Saudi Arabia could drastically limit numbers at the annual haj pilgrimage to prevent a further outbreak of coronavirus after cases in the country topped 100,000, sources familiar with the matter said on Monday. Some 2.5 million pilgrims visit the holiest sites of Islam in Mecca and Medina for the week-long haj, a once-in-a-lifetime duty for every able-bodied Muslim who can afford it. Official data show haj and the lesser, year-round umrah pilgrimage earn the kingdom about $12 billion a year. Saudi Arabia asked Muslims in March to put haj plans on hold and suspended umrah until further notice.

Morung Express - June 8, 2020

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