A total of 60,000 Saudis and foreign residents of the Kingdom are allowed this year to perform the rites of Hajj in Mecca, announced the Saudi Ministry of Hajj and Umrah in a statement relayed by the official agency SPA.

This decision was taken following the continued evolution of the Covid-19 pandemic and the emergence of new variants of the virus, the ministry said, adding that “those who want to perform the hajj must be between 18 and 65 years old, do not suffer from a chronic disease and have been vaccinated.

The Ministry of Hajj and Umrah affirmed that the government of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia places the safety, health and security of pilgrims at the heart of its priorities, in accordance with the precepts of Islam aimed at preserving human life, providing all the necessary facilities to enable pilgrims to perform the rituals of Hajj and Umrah and to easily access the holy places.

Over the past ten years, Saudi Arabia has received more than 150 million pilgrims, the same source noted.

The Saudi competent, health and organizational authorities have been closely monitoring the global health situation, in order to organize the Hajj rituals according to an optimal model, in light of the accelerated developments of this epidemic, the statement added.