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Children not allowed at Two Holy Mosques during Ramadan
Published in The Saudi Gazette on 11 - 04 - 2021

RIYADH — The Ministry of Hajj and Umrah revealed on Sunday the updated mechanism and regulations for the issuance of permit to perform Umrah as well as to perform prayer at Grand Mosque in Makkah and visit the Rawdah Sharif at the Prophet's Mosque in Madinah during the holy month of Ramadan.
According to the regulations, only vaccinated pilgrims and worshipers will be allowed to perform the rituals. Children will not be allowed to accompany the pilgrims and worshipers at the Two Holy Mosques. The Isha prayer permit will include performance of taraweeh (special prayers during Ramadan) prayers as well.
The ministry said that the permits will be issued for immunized persons as shown in the Tawakkalna application, and these include three categories: those immunized by taking two doses of the vaccine; those who have spent 14 days after getting their first dose of the vaccine; and those who have recovered from coronavirus.
The Ministry has set seven time periods for the performance of Umrah, and it will update the capacity around the clock according to the available and canceled reservations.
The ministry emphasized that unauthorized vehicles are not allowed to enter the Central Haram Area in Makkah. Vehicles will have to enter Makkah through various checkpoints only in the appropriate time as mentioned in the permit.
The ministry also highlighted the importance of pre-purchase of transport tickets electronically through the Eatmarna application in order to avoid the delay in transport centers.
During the holy month of Ramadan, the capacity of the Grand Mosque will be raised in order to accommodate 50,000 vaccinated Umrah pilgrims and 100,000 worshipers.
The pilgrims and worshipers will be allowed to enter the Grand Mosques strictly in compliance with the precautionary measures and preventive protocols to stem the spread of coronavirus.
Showing the permits and verifying their validity will be through the Tawakkalna application directly from the account of the permit holder in the application.
The ministry urged all the faithful to get permits issued only through the approved Eatmarna and Tawakkalna applications and warned against relying on fake websites and campaigns.
Recently, the Ministry of Interior warned that hefty fines would be slapped on those who enter Makkah to perform Umrah or prayer at the Grand Mosque without a valid permit during the month of Ramadan.
"Anyone who is caught while entering Makkah to perform Umrah without a permit will face a fine of SR10,000 while anyone who enters Makkah to perform prayer at the Grand Mosque without a permit will have to pay a fine of SR1,000," an official source at the ministry said.
According to the source, the new regulation will be in force until the end of the pandemic and till the return to normal public life. The ministry source called upon citizens and expatriates to abide by the directives to obtain a permit for the performance of Umrah and prayer at the Grand Mosque through the Eatmarna application.
"The security personnel will carry out their duties along all roads, security check posts, as well as at the sites and corridors leading to the central area around the Grand Mosque to prevent any attempt to violate the regulations issued in this regard," the source added.

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