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Saudi suspends entry of Gulf nationals to Mecca, Medina

Saudi suspends entry of Gulf nationals to Mecca, Medina

Riyadh: Saudi Arabia has announced the temporary suspension of the entry of Gulf nationals to the holy sites of Mecca and Medina as part of the Kingdom's precautionary measures against the deadly coronavirus.

The Saudi Foreign Ministry said in a statement on Friday that the temporary ban does not cover Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) nationals who have been in the Kingdom for 14 consecutive days without showing signs of coronavirus infection and wish to perform Umrah or visit the Prophet's Mosque, reports Xinhua news agency.

Such GCC nationals can apply through the website of the Ministry of Hajj and Umrah to obtain a permit.

The government of Saudi Arabia confirmed that it was closely following developments in the spread of the virus and its repercussions.

It said that the precautionary measures were being reviewed, and additional measures will be taken.

Saudi Arabia announced on Thursday the suspension of visits to the Prophet's Mosque in Medina and tourist visas for nationals of countries with confirmed coronavirus outbreaks.

The measures were taken after over 220 coronavirus cases were detected in the Middle East.

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