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Saudi to allow 60,000 vaccinated residents to perform hajj

12 Jun 2021 By AFP

Saudi Arabia announced on Saturday it will allow 60,000 vaccinated residents of the kingdom to perform the annual hajj, state media reported.

The hajj ministry said this year’s pilgrimage would be ‘open for nationals and residents of the kingdom, limited to 60,000 pilgrims’, according to the official Saudi Press Agency.

The pilgrimage, scheduled to be held at the end of July, would be limited to those who have been vaccinated and are below 65 years of age with no chronic illnesses, it said.

It will be the second year in a row that the kingdom hosts a downscaled hajj amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Only up to 10,000 Muslims took part last year, a far cry from the 2.5mn who participated in the five-day annual pilgrimage in 2019.

In a relaxation of coronavirus curbs last October, Saudi Arabia opened the Grand Mosque for prayers for the first time in seven months and partially resumed the all-year-round umrah pilgrimage.

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