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The Prophet's Mosque in Medina. Image Credit: Supplied

Dubai: Dry food is now allowed inside the Two Holy Mosques in Mecca and Medina during Ramadan after two years of suspension due to COVID-19 curbs, state-owned news agency SPA said on Tuesday.

Sheikh Abdul Rahman Al Sudais, head of the Presidency for the Affairs of Two Holy Mosques, announced that dry food such as dates, bread, cheese and similar kinds of food are now allowed inside Mecca’s Grand Mosque and the Prophet Mohammed’s Mosque in Medina

Al Sudais affirmed that allowing dry foods would be in accordance with health and safety standards to maintain the cleanliness of the two mosques.

Al Sudais called on all the institution’s agencies and departments to unify their efforts in order to make the operational plans for Ramadan a success and better serve pilgrims and visitors to the Grand Mosque and the Prophet’s Mosque.

The move follows the latest decisions lifting precautionary measures, scrapping physical distance and allowing the return of ritual Itikaf at the two holy mosques during Ramadan.

The presidency also launched an online portal featuring guidelines and registration facilities for prospective worshippers who want to perform Itikaf during the fasting month.

Itikaf, seclusion, means staying at mosques for the sole purpose of worshipping and coming closer to Allah, following the example of the Prophet Mohammed, peace be upon him. The ritual is usually performed in the last 10 ten days of the lunar month of Ramadan, which is expected to begin this year on April 2.