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The Haramin train in a photo released by the official Saudi news agency SPA. Image Credit:

Cairo: Saudi authorities on Wednesday re-operated a high-speed rail service, more than two months after it was halted due to a blaze, an official statement said.

On September 29, a fire broke out at a station in the western city of Jeddah, partially damaging the facility and grounding the service to a halt.

The service, launched last year, connects Makkah and Madina via Jeddah.

On Wednesday, the service, officially known as the Haramain Train, resumed from the station of the New King Abdul Aziz Airport in Jeddah to Madina. The journeys between Makkah and Madina are expected to resume next week.

The 99,000-square-metre station linked to the New King Abdul Aziz Airport can accommodate about 3,205 passengers per hour, the official Saudi news agency SPA reported.

A journey on the train covers 450 kilometres between Makkah and Madina and takes two hours. The project, the kingdom’s hugest public transport facility, aims to carry 60 million passengers annually and cope with the growing numbers of Muslim pilgrims flocking to Islam’s holiest sites there.