Hajj saudi arabia mecca
Pilgrims circle the Kaaba and pray at the Grand Mosque as Saudi Arabia welcomes back pilgrims for the 2022 Hajj season, in the holy city of Mecca, Saudi Arabia July 1, 2022. Image Credit: Reuters

Cairo: Saudi Arabia has said that the sanctity of the Two Holy Mosques in Mecca and Medina is a “red line”, the crossing of which will not be tolerated whatever the nationality of the violator.

“For Saudi Arabia, the sanctity of the Two Holy Mosques is a read line,” said chief of the General Presidency for Affairs of the Grand Mosque and the Prophet’s Mosque Abdul Rahman Al Sudais.

“There will be no leniency towards whoever violates or transgresses this sanctity whatever his nationality or job based on the kingdom’s absolute control on the holy cities and sites,” Al Sudais added, according to the Saudi news portal Sabq.

He stressed the necessity of strictly observing related rules, warning against breaching them.

“It is important to apply deterrent penalties against such security crimes,” Al Sudais added.

The warning was made after Saudi authorities said a citizen had been arrested for suspected complicity in facilitating the illegal entry of a non-Muslim journalist, holding US nationality, into Mecca, the holiest Islamic city, in breach of a ban for non-Muslims.

Mecca police said the case of the journalist has been referred to the kingdom’s public prosecution to take the necessary procedures.