Coronavirus: Thermal cameras installed in Mecca’s Grand Mosque ahead of Umrah

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New thermal cameras have been installed across the Holy Grand Mosque in Mecca as part of preparations to reopen the holy sites for Umrah pilgrims starting from October 4, according to a statement from authorities.

The installation of the thermal cameras was overseen by the head of the General Presidency for the Two Holy Mosques, Sheikh Dr. Abdulrahman bin Abdulaziz al-Sudais on Thursday.

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Saudi Arabia will gradually begin allowing Umrah pilgrims to re-enter the Two Holy Mosques starting from October 4, according to an announcement earlier in the week by the Ministry of Interior.

The ongoing preparations come within plans drawn up by the General Presidency since the closure of the Grand Mosque relating to procedures dealing with pilgrims about to perform the Umrah, known as the lesser Hajj, amid the coronavirus pandemic.

The thermal cameras are expected to monitor the body temperatures of all visitors and pilgrims visiting the Grand Mosque. It will allow authorities to deal quickly with suspected cases of coronavirus and to take all preventive and precautionary measures to ensure the health and safety of all.

During the initial phase, only citizens and nationals residing within the Kingdom will be allowed to perform Umrah starting from October 4, with a 30 percent capacity limit.

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