Egyptians suffering from chronic diseases banned from hajj this year: Minister

Ahram Online , MENA , Thursday 26 May 2022

Egypt will not allow people suffering from chronic diseases to perform the hajj this year, as the country fears for their health and lives, said Minister of Social Solidarity Nevine El-Qabbaj on Wednesday.


This is one of the health requirements set by the Egyptian government for issuing the 2022 hajj pilgrimage visas, El-Qabbaj told MBC Masr TV channel. 

Muslims perform the hajj, the Islamic pilgrimage to Mecca, every year during Dhul-Hijjah month, the last month of the Islamic year, which coincides this year with July. 

Hajj visas allocated for Egypt this year are only 25 percent of the average number of visas that had been allocated for the country before the pandemic, El-Qabbaj noted. 

El-Qabbaj praised the new Egyptian law recently approved by parliament to regulate hajj travel by setting up the Unified Egyptian Portal for Online Hajj Visas.

The 25-article bill states that a website will be made available for Egyptian citizens seeking to travel to Saudi Arabia to perform their pilgrimage. The bill aims to help Egyptian pilgrims avoid scams or other fraudulent activities.

El-Qabbaj said the website aims to guarantee that all hajj services are provided to citizens in a transparent way.

Egypt's Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities had earlier announced it was extending the registration period for 2022’s hajj pilgrimage through tourism companies until 23 May instead of 20 May. 

The ministry also announced the launch of a new service through its hajj website to enable citizens who have registered for the hajj through tourism companies to inquire about their registration online and ensure that companies have registered their data. 

Saudi Arabia announced earlier that it would resume receiving non-Saudi pilgrims who want to perform the hajj following a two-year hiatus due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

In April, the Saudi Ministry of Hajj and Umrah announced a host of regulations for this year’s pilgrimage, including that pilgrims must be less than 65 years of age and be fully vaccinated. 

Pilgrims coming from outside Saudi Arabia are also required to present a negative PCR test result conducted within 72 hours before arriving in the country and to commit themselves to preventive measures. 

Saudi Arabia also announced in April that it will allow a million people to perform the hajj this year, up from a few hundred in 2020 and about 60,000 in 2021, the first two years of the pandemic. 

In 2019, the year that preceded the outbreak of the pandemic, Saudi Arabia received around 2.5 million pilgrims.

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