Coronavirus: Saudi Arabia allows gatherings, family visits of 50 people, sets fines

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Saudi Arabia modified the coronavirus regulations regarding limiting gatherings and family visits to contain the spread of COVID-19, the Ministry of Interior said on Saturday, according to state news agency SPA.

The maximum number of people allowed to gather during family visits, non-family gatherings inside homes, gatherings in farms, and social events such as funerals and parties, is now raised to 50 individuals.

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Previously, gatherings of more than five people, regardless of the occasion, were banned.

The Kingdom also introduced new fines:

Private sector companies which violate the latest coronavirus precautionary guidelines announced after the Kingdom started its phased re-opening plan, will face a 10,000 riyal ($2,662) fine, that can be incurred for:

Allowing entry of people who are not wearing face masks or covering their nose and mouth with a piece of cloth.

Not providing sanitizers as required in specific areas.

Not checking the temperature of employees and customers at the entrances of malls.

Not disinfecting carts and shopping baskets after each use.

Not disinfecting facilities and surfaces.

Opening children’s play areas.

Opening clothing trial rooms.

The fine will be doubled, if an establishment repeats the violation.

Individuals who intentionally violate the new precautionary guidelines will face a fine of 1,000 riyals ($266). This can be incurred for:

Not wearing a face mask or covering the nose and mouth with a piece of cloth.

Not practicing social distancing (maintaining a two-meter distance from other people).

Refusing temperature checks when entering public or private sector facilities.

Not following protocol when temperature is found to be higher than 38 degree Celsius.

The fine will be doubled, if an individual repeats the violation.

Saudi Arabia had shortened curfew and allowed the resumption of some economic activities, and from May 31 it will allow the resumption of Friday and group prayers in mosques, the return of public and private employees to work from their offices, the resumption of dine-in services in restaurants and cafes, the operation of domestic flights.

Eventually, starting from June 21, Saudi Arabia will return to “normalcy”, except for Mecca, and restore conditions to how life was before implementing coronavirus curfews.

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