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Indonesia Cancels Annual Hajj Over COVID-19 Pandemic Concerns

Jun 02, 2020

 

Faizel Patel – 02/06/2020

(Twitter: @FaizelPatel143)

With Hajj not far off, Indonesia has cancelled plans to attend the annual Hajj in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia this year citing concerns over the COVID-19 pandemic.

Al Jazeera reports that more than 220,000 people from the world’s biggest Muslim-majority country were set to take part in this year’s Hajj.

The annual hajj is the largest gathering of Muslims anywhere in the world.

With Umrah already postponed, the Hajj Ministry in Saudi Arabia is yet to announce a final decision on whether it will go ahead with Hajj 2020/1441.

Indonesia’s religious affairs minister Fachrul Razi says the government decided to cancel the Hajj 2020 as the Saudi Arabian authorities failed to provide certainty.

“This was a very bitter and difficult decision. But we have a responsibility to protect our pilgrims and Hajj workers.”

Jakarta had considered allowing half the usual number of pilgrims to travel in order to limit the risk, but instead opted to keep them all at home.

At the same time, the South African Hajj and Umrah Council (SAHUC) told Radio Islam in May that they are also awaiting  official confirmation from the Ministry of Hajj & Umrah in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia with regards to whether Hajj 1441H will be proceeding this year or not due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

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