Saudi Arabia urges Muslims to wait on Haj plan amid coronavirus outbreak

Saudi Arabia's Minister of Haj and Umrah Dr. Muhammad Saleh Benten speaking on Al-Ekhbariya television on Tuesday

Saudi Gazette report

JEDDAH — Saudi Arabia is exerting all its efforts to fight coronavirus and urges Muslims to wait until there is more clarity about the coronavirus pandemic before planning to attend the annual Haj pilgrimage.

Speaking on Al-Ekhbariya television on Tuesday, Minister of Haj and Umrah Dr. Muhammad Saleh Benten said: “Saudi Arabia is fully ready to serve pilgrims and Umrah seekers, but under the current circumstances, as we are talking about the global pandemic... the Kingdom is keen to protect the health of Muslims and citizens and so we have asked our brother Muslims in all countries to wait before doing (Haj) contracts until the situation is clear."

Some 2.5 million pilgrims visit Makkah and Madinah each year for the Haj.