The Ministry of Islamic Affairs has instructed local pilgrimage agencies to temporarily halt tours for Umrah pilgrimage due to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) suspending entry into the country as a security measure against the fast-spreading Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19).
Announcing that the middle-eastern country has ceased to issue visa's to pilgrims, the ministry stated that local Hajj & Umrah agencies have been instructed to temporarily halt tours for Umrah pilgrimage.
On Thursday, Saudi Arabia's Ministry of Foreign Affairs revealed that the country has also denied tourist visa's for travellers visiting from countries affecting by the coronavirus. While the country has not disclosed how long the visa suspension for Umrah pilgrims will last, Saudi's foreign ministry asserted that the situation is being monitored closely.
Saudi Arabia's foreign ministry further stated that the country will follow the global protocol against the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19).
As such, Saudi Arabia has appealed against Saudi citizen's travelling to countries affected by the coronavirus and has also temporarily put a stop to visa-less travel arrangements in-between Gulf countries.
While over 80،000 people have tested positive for the coronavirus, 2801 people have died from the infection up to date.