Cairo: Vaccination against COVID-19 will be a main condition for participation in this year’s Hajj Muslim pilgrimage, a Saudi newspaper reported, citing a senior health official. Saudi Health Minister Dr Tawfiq Al Rabiah has directed linking eligibility for the Hajj to the would-be participants’ inoculation against COVID-19, according to Okaz.
The paper cited a circular by the minister urging early preparations for providing the manpower needed to man health facilities during the Hajj rituals.
Dr Al Rabiah has also instructed the formation of a committee for providing the COVID-19 jabs for worshippers performing the Hajj, or the Umrah that is undertaken in other times than the Hajj season.
“Make taking the vaccine against COVID-19 mandatory for those wishing to participate [in the Hajj]. It is one of the conditions for attending the Hajj season,” Okaz quoted the minister as saying.
The scale of attending the Hajj, due to take place in July this year, is not clear yet.
Last year’s Hajj was performed by a limited number of Saudis and foreign Muslims residing in Saudi Arabia to curb the spread of the novel coronavirus.