Masjid-i-Nabawi reopens for public
Thousands of faithfuls offered early morning prayers in the mosque with strict compliance of the precautionary measures to prevent the spread of coronavirus.
Strict precautionary measures including limiting the congregation to 40 percent of the mosque’s capacity at a time are being observed.
Masjid-e-Nabawi was allowed to be reopened for worshippers after the approval of King Salman. The Prophet’s Mosque was closed for worshippers for over two months due to the coronavirus pandemic.
In the initial phase, instead of the old part of the Prophet's Mosque, only the extended part has been reopened. In order to maintain the social distance and the corona SOPs, only 40 percent of the prescribed number of worshippers are allowed to offer congregational prayers and a distance of three feet between the worshippers has been ensured in the prayers.
Apart from Masjid-e-Nabawi, other mosques in Saudi Arabia have also been opened for prayers.
It is pertinent to mention that the two Holy Mosques were closed for congregational prayers due to the corona pandemic. The mosques were not even opened during the holy month of Ramazan and according to Saudi Ministry of Hajj and Umrah despite of easing restrictions regarding reopening of mosques the suspension of Umrah trips remains in effect.
Moreover domestic air travel will also resume on Sunday and all employees have been directed to return to their workplaces.
According to Arab News, ten million text messages (SMS) containing information on the precautionary measures approved by the Saudi Ministry of Islamic Affairs were sent in the wake of the return of congregational prayers in mosques.
The return of Friday and group prayers in the Kingdom’s mosques — except in Makkah — comes as the second phase of easing restrictions begins on Sunday May 31 and will last until June 20.
The informative messages that were broadcasted by the ministry in several languages included advice, directives and instructions, in line with the authorities’ decisions to ensure the safety of mosque-goers and prevent the spread of the coronavirus.
The Ministry of Islamic Affairs also increased its media presence through its participation in various satellite channels and social networking sites and through its digital platforms to educate the Saudi community about the importance of following the directions.
Saudi Minister of Islamic Affairs Sheikh Abdullatif Al-Asheikh announced on Friday the readiness of the Kingdom’s mosques to welcome worshippers after he completed field trips to check on necessary preparations.
“Throughout our inspection trips, we found our mosques to have completed preparations and are in the best condition,” said the minister. “Whatever remains falls upon citizens. I hope that citizens and residents follow healthy precautionary measures as instructed by professionals. I hope that they’re careful with their own lives and the lives of others.”