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Coronavirus

COVID-19 rules in Saudi Arabia: Events, weddings canceled and cinemas, gyms closed

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Saudi Arabia has introduced new rules to stem the spread of COVID-19, including the suspension of all recreational activities and events for the next 10 days, according to the interior ministry.

Saudi Arabia will close all cinemas, indoor entertainment centers, independent indoor games venues or those located in restaurants or shopping centers, etc, gyms and sports centers for a period of 10 days as part of countermeasures against COVID-19, according to an official announcement early on Thursday.

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The interior ministry said the period of suspension is subjected to extension if deemed necessary by authorities.

A Saudi movie viewer has her temperature taken as she wears a face mask to help curb the spread of the coronavirus, at VOX Cinema hall in Jiddah, Saudi Arabia, Friday, June 26, 2020, after the announcement of easing of lockdown measures amid the coronavirus outbreak. (AP Photo/Amr Nabil)
A Saudi movie viewer has her temperature taken as she wears a face mask to help curb the spread of the coronavirus, at VOX Cinema hall in Jiddah, Saudi Arabia, Friday, June 26, 2020, after the announcement of easing of lockdown measures amid the coronavirus outbreak. (AP Photo/Amr Nabil)

All events and parties, including weddings, corporate meetings and the like, held in banquet and wedding halls or those in hotels will be suspended for a period of 30 days as part of the new rules.

All other social gatherings to a maximum of 20 individuals persons for the next 10 days, according to the interior ministry, with the period for the rule subject to extension.

All of the announced new #COVID19 rules regarding social gatherings and suspension of recreational activities in Saudi Arabia will come into effect at 10 pm local time on February 4, according to the interior ministry.

A worker wears a protective suit, following the outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), sterilizes the tables before the customers sit down after a restaurant reopened, in Riyadh. (Reuters)
A worker wears a protective suit, following the outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), sterilizes the tables before the customers sit down after a restaurant reopened, in Riyadh. (Reuters)

“The decision was based on what was submitted by the competent health authorities regarding the measures taken by the Kingdom in the face of the emerging COVID-19 corona and coinciding with the emergence of indicators of an increase in the epidemic curve in some regions of the Kingdom, the laxity in applying the preventive and precautionary measures and the approved protocols, and the need to take preventive and precautionary measures commensurate with the needs of the current situation,” the Saudi Press Agency reported citing a source from the interior ministry.

Saudi Arabia on Wednesday reported 306 new coronavirus cases, bringing the total to 368,945 cases, according to the Ministry of Health. The death toll rose by three to 6,386.

The announcement comes after Saudi Arabia's health minister Tawfiq al-Rabiah warned on Sunday that new coronavirus restrictions could be imposed if citizens and residents do not comply with health restrictions.

Read more:

Coronavirus: Saudi Arabia bans entry from 20 countries starting Feb. 3

Coronavirus: Saudi Arabia extends travel restrictions, border closure to May 17

Saudi Arabia reports 200 pct increase in coronavirus cases in Jan: Spokesman

Saudi Arabia could see further COVID-19 restrictions due to non-compliance: Minister