COVID-19: Saudi Arabia bans rooftop prayers

The Kingdom is easing the lockdown and restrictions imposed to stop the spread of COVID-19 in different phases. In the first phase of easing the lockdown, several mosques were allowed to open and hold regular prayers following the precautionary measures.

As soon as the mosques were opened the crowd of people was seen gathering in the mosques for prayer that led some of the worshippers to pray on the roofs of the mosques.

No prayer on the rooftop

As soon as the authorities came to know about it, the Saudi religious authorities banned the prayers on the roofs of the mosque and also declared punishment for the violators.

The warning was issued when an image when viral on the internet that showed some worshippers saying their Friday prayer on the roof of a mosque. The image was captured Al Aridah a region in Jizan.

The spokesperson for Jizan Branch of the Ministry of Islamic affairs and call, Mohammad Bin Abdhu said, No prayer is allowed on the roofs of the mosques.

He further said that this act is impermissible and anyone observes violating the rules will be hardly punished according to legal procedures. He also claimed that the rooftops of all the mosques have been closed.

The religious ministry also claimed that in the second phase of lifting lockdown more mosques will be opened for prayers as this will help to reduce the crowding and will be one major precautionary step to prevent the worshippers from the infection.

Last week several mosques were allowed to open in the Kingdom following the precautionary measures like all the mosques will be allowed to open 15 minutes before the adhan and close 10 minutes after the prayer and the interval between the adhan and the prayer was also shortened to 10 minutes,

Moreover, worshippers were said to keep a distance of nearly two meters as a precautionary measure.

The worshippers were said to come to mosques after performing ablution from their home as all the toilets and ablution places were closed and a ban was also applied on the distribution of food and water in the mosque.

The temperature of the worshippers was checked at the entrance of the mosque. All the Quran classes and gatherings were also suspended in the mosques.

Source: Gulf News

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Steve has been living in Saudi Arabia since 2013 and writing about Saudi rules, regulations, guides, and procedures since then.