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10 new projects in holy sites to benefit pilgrims

Saudi Arabia, August 10, 2017

Saudi Arabia is fully prepared to serve all pilgrims without any distinction and the Guests of Almight Allah will this year benefit from a number of development projects in the holy sites, Deputy Emir of Makkah, Prince Abdullah Bin Bandar, has said.

'We will deploy all our resources and potential to serve the pilgrims without any exception,' he said after an inspection tour of the projects.

Prince Abdullah said the projects were completed in a record time and aimed at facilitating the movement of pilgrims inside the holy sites and providing them with shade to reduce the impact of the blazing sun.

Among others, the projects consist of improving the temperature at the Jamarat area through the use of water sprinkles, shading the pedestrian road from Jamarat to Aziziyah District in Makkah, construction of a bridge for pedestrians near Al-Wadi Hospital in Mina and the construction of a permanent cement staircase in the northern part of Jabl Al-Rahma (Mountain of Providence) in the plains of Arafat.

Meanwhile, as many as 529,207 pilgrims are still staying in Madinah to pay homage to Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) and pray in his mosque, according to data collected from Private Establishment for Guides.

The report said the pilgrims who were staying in Madinah this time last year were 818,185.

In Makkah, the Tawafa Establishment of Pilgrims from the Arab Countries on Tuesday received the first batch of 1,171 pilgrims from Iraq out of a total number of about 35,000 who will be performing Haj this year.

The establishment is serving about 360,000 pilgrims from 19 Arab countries through 138 service offices manned by more than 800 employees.

Meanwhile, the Ministry of Haj and Umrah has launched its program titled 'be helpful' to organize the voluntary work during the Haj season.

It said volunteers can register in the program through certain electronic devices at the airports in Jeddah and Madinah and also in the central area around the Grand Mosque in Makkah.

The ministry said voluntary work during the Haj consists of translation and guidance, field services and health care.

For the first time in the history of Haj, Saudi female nurses are vaccinating women pilgrims on arrival at the Haj Terminal of King Abdulaziz International Airport (KAIA).

Manager of the terminal, Abdul Majeed Al-Afghani said the female nurses were part of a 610-strong health cadre who are vaccinating pilgrims on arrival and checking their health certificates.

Syrian pilgrims

The first batch of the 15,000 Syrian pilgrims is expected to arrive in the Kingdom on Saturday coming from Turkey.

Officials at the Syrian Haj mission said about 180 of them will be coming from Qatar.

Minister of Haj and Umrah, Muhammad Saleh Bantan, said the ministry's e-portal through which domestic pilgrims register, has eliminated fake Haj companies by 100 percent.

'The ministry will have no responsibility toward any pilgrim not registering through the portal,' he warned.

The minister said all the tents erected in the holy sites are fire-resisting and are air-conditioned.

Commander of the Passports Department at KAIA, Maj. Gen. Nayaf Bin Sultan Al-Ruwais said four cases of forged passports were discovered in the past two weeks and the holders were forthwith deported to their countries.

He said the passport processing at the airport does not take more than 20 minutes to complete after which the pilgrims are allowed to proceed to Makkah or Madinah.

saudigazette