Cairo: Saudi authorities have said that a recent decision restricting repetition of Umrah or lesser pilgrimage to a 10-day gap also applies to overseas Muslims as the kingdom is experiencing a spike in COVID-19 infections.
The Ministry of Hajj and Umrah has said that pilgrims arriving from abroad are allowed to stay in the country for 30 days and have to meet certain requirements, the Saudi newspaper Okaz has reported.
The Overseas Muslims, coming to Saudi Arabia to perform Umrah, have to be aged 12 and above, and show status of immunization on the health app Tawakkalna.
Based on the 10-day interval for repeating Umrah, the overseas Muslims could undertake the rituals three times at most during their 30-day stay, the paper said, citing the ministry.
Earlier this month, the ministry attributed its decision on restricting Umrah repetition to recent precautions against COVID-19 reimposed in the two holy mosques in Mecca and Medina.
In October 2020, Saudi Arabia resumed Umrah after about seven months of suspension due to the global pandemic.
Last month, Saudi Arabia reimposed wearing face masks and social distancing in outdoor and indoor places amid an increase in COVID-19 infections.
Authorities also reintroduced distancing in the two holy mosques after it was cancelled in October.