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Coronavirus: Saudi Arabia set to lift COVID-19 restrictions on June 21

Published: (Updated: ) in Australian News by .

Saudi Arabia is set to lift its coronavirus restrictions across the country, except in Mecca, and enter the third stage of its COVID-19 strategy on June 21 – the latest effort by the Kingdom to return

Saudi Arabia is set to lift its coronavirus restrictions across the country, except in Mecca, and enter the third stage of its COVID-19 strategy on June 21 – the latest effort by the Kingdom to return to “normalcy.”

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Curfews in the country are expected to be lifted in line with the three-stage plan announced on May 26, but the decision has yet to be announced by the Ministry of Interior and the Ministry of Health, who will determine whether previous stages need to be extended or strict precautionary measures need to be reimposed.

The 15-hour lockdown in Jeddah from 3 p.m. to 6 a.m. will end on June 20, and public and private sector employees in the city will be allowed to return to work.

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Social distancing measures will continue to be enforced in the country, and gatherings of more than five people will also be banned.

International travel will be suspended until further notice, but the decision to resume flights outside Saudi Arabia is currently being reviewed by special committees, the spokesman for the General Authority of Civil Aviation (GACA) said on Wednesday.

No official statement has been made on whether the upcoming Hajj season – set to begin on July 28 pending the moon sighting – will be cancelled to further prevent the coronavirus from spreading.

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Economic and commercial activities are also set to resume on Sunday, but no announcement has been made yet on whether beauty salons, barbershops, sports and health clubs, recreational centers, and cinemas will reopen.

Mosques in Saudi Arabia’s Mecca are also preparing to reopen their doors on June 21 after the coronavirus pandemic forced them to halt prayers for three months, state television channel al-Ekhbariya reported on Friday.

Return to normalcy

The lifting of restrictions does not mean that the pandemic is over, health ministry spokesman Mohammed al-Abd al-Ali said on Thursday.

“The virus is still there, the virus is active, the pandemic is still there, and there is still no vaccine. Research is ongoing, and we are hopeful. Treatment protocols are constantly being updated,” he said.

“A return to normalcy is now possible, but must be done with caution,” al-Abd al-Ali added.

Earlier this month, the health ministry spokesman had said that the number of active coronavirus cases and the virus-related death toll in Saudi Arabia is rising because several members of the public continue to ignore preventative measures.

He urged citizens and residents to continue to adhere to precautionary measures.

Source: News https://english.alarabiya.net/en/coronavirus/2020/06/20/Coronavirus-Saudi-Arabia-set-to-lift-COVID-19-restrictions-on-June-21.html

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