Maldives Islamic Ministry on Monday said the ministry will facilitate arrangements for Hajj pilgrimage to Saudi Arabia if the Government of Saudi Arabia grants the opportunity.
The global COVID-19 pandemic has raised questions whether pilgrims will be able to travel to the Holy City of Mecca for the annual Hajj pilgrimage. The Saudi Arabian government is yet to make a decision on the matter. In the event that pilgrims are allowed to travel for the pilgrimage, the number of pilgrims allowed to travel will be limited. While over two million pilgrims visit the Holy Ka’bah in Mecca every year, the quota will be limited to at least 270,000 this year. Discussions are underway to set special criteria for those allowed to make the pilgrimage, and it is likely that only those between a specific age group will be allowed to go.
Speaking at the daily press conference held by the National Emergency Operations Centre (NEOC), Islamic Minister Dr. Ahmed Zahir said the government will make the necessary arrangements even if Saudi Arabia allows pilgrims to make the pilgrimage at the last minute.