Saudi Arabia has said it will not allow anyone to pray at the Grand Mosque (Kaaba Sharif) in Mecca and visit the Nawabi Mosque in Medina without receiving two doses of the vaccine against coronavirus.
The Saudi government’s Ministry of Hajj and Umrah has made it mandatory to receive a full dose of vaccine for prayers and worship at the two holy mosques.
According to Arab News, the new decision has been in effect since October 10. According to the new decision, only those who have been vaccinated in full dose will be allowed to perform Umrah, perform prayers at the Grand Mosque in Mecca and visit the Nawabi Mosque in Medina.
The status of immune starts from the date of taking the second dose of the three approved vaccines while the status of immune in the case of those who took Johnson & Johnson vaccine will be considered 14 days after taking the first dose.
According to the ministry, the health status will be immune for those who have received two doses of Sinopharm and Sinovac vaccines that are approved by the World Health Organization (WHO) and an additional booster dose of one of the approved vaccines in the Kingdom.
The MoH emphasized that the health status of immune will not include those who received one dose of vaccine and recovered from infection of coronavirus before or after the date of taking the first dose.
The ministry further clarified that the health status of those, who received one dose of Pfizer, AstraZeneca or Moderna or those who received two doses of Sinopharm and Sinovac vaccines approved by WHO, will be “Received first dose” on the Tawakkalna application.
As per the existing regulations of the Ministry of Hajj and Umrah, permit for Umrah and prayer at the Grand Mosque is available for those pilgrims who completed the required doses of vaccination or those who completed 14 days after receiving first dose of vaccine as well as those who recovered from infection of coronavirus and that is based on the immune status on the Tawakkalna application.
However, the last two categories will be excluded from the status of immune after the update of the application after Oct. 10.
This means that the categories of pilgrims who took one dose of vaccine or recovered from infection will no longer enjoy the right to book an appointment to obtain permit for performing Umrah and prayer at the Grand Mosque as well as for the visit of the Rawdah Sharif and the grave of the Prophet (peace be upon him) at the Prophet’s Mosque in Madinah through the Eatmarna and Tawakkalna applications.
According to the update announced by the Ministry of Health, those who received the first dose will not be counted as immune and their health status on the Tawakkalna will be “Received one dose.”
Their status will turn into “No proven infection” if they failed to take the second dose 90 days after taking the first dose and the status will be changed to “immune” when they receive the second dose.
The ministry stressed that those who have recovered from coronavirus will have neither any current status nor it is considered as a health status on the Tawakkalna application after the new update.