In a historic move, Saudi Arabia has suspended pilgrimages to Mecca and Medina because of the recent COVID-19 outbreak.
Saudi Arabia’s Foreign Ministry made the announcement in a message titled “Precautionary measures to prevent coronavirus from reaching the Kingdom”.
The statement reads: “Entry in into the Kingdom for the purpose of Umrah and/or visiting the prophet’s mosque is temporarily suspended.
Every year, thousands of Nigerians visit the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, but that will not be the case this year.
The Novel Coronavirus outbreak has proved difficult to contain even after steep measures by Governments of several countries.
For instance, Italy banned all flights from China; however, they now record the highest number of cases in Europe.
Needless to say, pilgrimages to Mecca and Medina pose a great risk to the Kindom of Saudi Arabia because of the infectious nature of the virus.
Meanwhile, the ban is temporary and it’ll most likely be reviewed once the virus is contained.