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Coronavirus: Saudi Arabia suspends congregational prayers

Coronavirus: Saudi Arabia suspends congregational prayers
March 17
21:41 2020

Saudi Arabia has suspended congregational prayers to tackle the spread of coronavirus.

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The country’s council of senior scholars said the decision was reached at a meeting in Riyadh on Tuesday.

It also said only the two holy mosques in Mecca and Medina would be made available for congregational prayers.

The scholars said they agreed “to issue a fatwa stopping the Friday and congregational prayers for all the obligatory Salat in the mosques across the kingdom except for the two holy mosques (Masjid Al Haram and Masjid Al Nabawi)”.

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However, they said the call to prayer would be done at all mosques, despite the suspension.

On Monday, Saudi Arabia announced 38 new cases of Covid-19 bringing the total number of infected persons to 171.

The Saudi Arabian government had earlier suspended visa issuance to pilgrims wishing to perform Umrah (lesser hajj) over fears of coronavirus.

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Umrah is a pilgrimage performed by Muslims at any time of the year.

The country also suspended the issuance of tourist visa to residents of countries “where the virus is a danger”.

Local authorities have also shut down malls, banned serving food in restaurants and cafes, as well as campaigned against gatherings in public places.

Meanwhile, Ghana had also announced the suspension of religious gatherings, including congregational prayers at mosques.

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