Saudi Arabia bars foreign pilgrims from Hajj for second time

Foreign pilgrims will not perform the hajj this year, Saudi Arabia said Saturday, the second straight year the Gulf country is preventing outside believers to perform the religious ritual.
State-run news agency SPA indicated that the decision is motivated by the continuing spread of Covid-19 and its mutations.
According to the ministry of Haj and Umrah, only 60,000 pilgrims (local residents) aged between 18 and 65 and free from chronic disease and vaccinated against the pandemic will be allowed.
The candidates will register online and the pilgrimage is set to start around July 28. The kingdom last year only allowed 1,000 people, all of them the local residents, to perform the religious ritual.
Before the pandemic, in 2019, 2.49 million people among whom 1.86 foreigners performed the Hajj.

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