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Saudi Arabia issues guidelines for reopening mosques

Saudi Arabia issues guidelines for reopening mosques

Children under the age of 15 are not allowed to attend prayers at the mosques

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The Saudi Ministry of Islamic Affairs has issued two circulars detailing a set of health protocols that must be adhered to at all mosques as they begin to reopen from May 28 – June 20.

This does not apply to mosques in Makkah which will remain closed during this period.

The circular issued by Sheikh Dr. Abdullatif bin Abdulaziz Al Al-Sheikh, the Minister for Islamic Affairs, calls for mosques to open 15 minutes before the prayer time and close 10 minutes after the scheduled prayers.

The waiting time between the call to prayer and the prayer itself must be 10 minutes.

All windows and doors must be opened during prayer times.

Worshippers must maintain a distance of two meters between each other, with one row left empty after each row.

Read: Saudi Arabia unveils phased plan to reopen mosques, offices and malls

Copies of the Quran and books will not be available in the mosques.

Water coolers and refrigerators must be closed and the distribution of water or food in the mosque or anything else such as perfumes and miswak must be stopped.

Toilets and places of ablution must also be closed.

Religious courses, programmes and lectures, as well as sessions to memorise the Quran in the mosques, will remain suspended until further notice, while education and lectures continue to be held remotely.

Imams must encourage worshippers to wear a cloth mask, perform ablutions at home, bring their own prayer rugs and not leave them after the prayer.

Also, children under the age of 15 are not allowed to attend prayers at the mosques.

As for Friday prayers, the mosques can open 20 minutes before the prayer and must shut 20 minutes after it, with the Friday sermon not exceeding 15 minutes.

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