Coronavirus Halts Pilgrimage: Saudi Arabia's Mecca Wears a Deserted Look

World | Associated Press | March 6, 2020, 12:11 pm
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 The coronavirus outbreak disrupted Islamic worship in the Middle East as Saudi Arabia banned its citizens and other residents of the kingdom from performing the pilgrimage in Mecca, while Iran cancelled Friday prayers in major cities. The decisions in Riyadh and Tehran affected both Sunni and Shiite Muslims alike. (Image: Twitter)
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The coronavirus outbreak disrupted Islamic worship in the Middle East as Saudi Arabia banned its citizens and other residents of the kingdom from performing the pilgrimage in Mecca, while Iran cancelled Friday prayers in major cities. The decisions in Riyadh and Tehran affected both Sunni and Shiite Muslims alike. (Image: Twitter)

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 Municipal workers are pictured in the empty white-tiled area surrounding the Kaaba, inside Mecca's Grand Mosque. Saudi Arabia today emptied Islam's holiest site for sterilisation over fears of the new coronavirus, an unprecedented move after the kingdom suspended the year-round Umrah pilgrimage. (Image: AFP)
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Municipal workers are pictured in the empty white-tiled area surrounding the Kaaba, inside Mecca's Grand Mosque. Saudi Arabia today emptied Islam's holiest site for sterilisation over fears of the new coronavirus, an unprecedented move after the kingdom suspended the year-round Umrah pilgrimage. (Image: AFP)

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 The area surrounding the Kaaba, inside Mecca's Grand Mosque, empty of worshippers. - Saudi Arabia emptied Islam's holiest site for sterilisation over fears of the new coronavirus, an unprecedented move after the kingdom suspended the year-round Umrah pilgrimage. (Image: AFP)
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The area surrounding the Kaaba, inside Mecca's Grand Mosque, empty of worshippers. - Saudi Arabia emptied Islam's holiest site for sterilisation over fears of the new coronavirus, an unprecedented move after the kingdom suspended the year-round Umrah pilgrimage. (Image: AFP)

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 Mecca's Grand Mosque and the Kaaba, before fears over the novel coronavirus, led to the the suspension of the
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Mecca's Grand Mosque and the Kaaba, before fears over the novel coronavirus, led to the the suspension of the "umrah" pilgrimage. (Image: AFP)

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 A relatively few numbers of Muslims pray around the Kaaba, the cubic building at the Grand Mosque, in the Muslim holy city of Mecca, Saudi Arabia. (Image: AP)
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A relatively few numbers of Muslims pray around the Kaaba, the cubic building at the Grand Mosque, in the Muslim holy city of Mecca, Saudi Arabia. (Image: AP)

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 Workers sterilize the ground in front of the Kaaba, the cubic building at the Grand Mosque, in the Muslim holy city of Mecca, Saudi Arabia. (Image: AP)
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Workers sterilize the ground in front of the Kaaba, the cubic building at the Grand Mosque, in the Muslim holy city of Mecca, Saudi Arabia. (Image: AP)

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 A relatively few numbers of Muslims pray around the Kaaba, the cubic building at the Grand Mosque, in the Muslim holy city of Mecca, Saudi Arabia. (Image: AP)
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A relatively few numbers of Muslims pray around the Kaaba, the cubic building at the Grand Mosque, in the Muslim holy city of Mecca, Saudi Arabia. (Image: AP)

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 Indonesian pilgrims, entered Mecca before halting the visas, wait for their bus to leave home in the Muslim holy city of Mecca, Saudi Arabia. (Image: AP)
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Indonesian pilgrims, entered Mecca before halting the visas, wait for their bus to leave home in the Muslim holy city of Mecca, Saudi Arabia. (Image: AP)

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 Workers clean as Muslim pilgrims circumambulate around the Kaaba, the cubic building at the Grand Mosque, during the minor pilgrimage, known as Umrah in the Muslim holy city of Mecca, Saudi Arabia. (Image: AP)
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Workers clean as Muslim pilgrims circumambulate around the Kaaba, the cubic building at the Grand Mosque, during the minor pilgrimage, known as Umrah in the Muslim holy city of Mecca, Saudi Arabia. (Image: AP)

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 A small number of pilgrims circumambulate around the Kaaba, the cubic building at the Grand Mosque, during the minor pilgrimage, known as Umrah, in the Muslim holy city of Mecca, Saudi Arabia. (Image: AP)
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A small number of pilgrims circumambulate around the Kaaba, the cubic building at the Grand Mosque, during the minor pilgrimage, known as Umrah, in the Muslim holy city of Mecca, Saudi Arabia. (Image: AP)

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 A pilgrim poses for a picture as in front of the Kaaba, the cubic building at the Grand Mosque, during the minor pilgrimage, known as Umrah, in the Muslim holy city of Mecca, Saudi Arabia. (Image: AP)
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A pilgrim poses for a picture as in front of the Kaaba, the cubic building at the Grand Mosque, during the minor pilgrimage, known as Umrah, in the Muslim holy city of Mecca, Saudi Arabia. (Image: AP)

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 Workers clean the Grand Mosque, during the minor pilgrimage, known as Umrah, in the Muslim holy city of Mecca, Saudi Arabia. (Image: AP)
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Workers clean the Grand Mosque, during the minor pilgrimage, known as Umrah, in the Muslim holy city of Mecca, Saudi Arabia. (Image: AP)

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 A pilgrim, who entered Saudi Arabia before the country halted travel to the holiest sites, takes a rest on a praying carpet at the roof of the Grand Mosque in the Muslim holy city of Mecca, Saudi Arabia. (Image: AP)
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A pilgrim, who entered Saudi Arabia before the country halted travel to the holiest sites, takes a rest on a praying carpet at the roof of the Grand Mosque in the Muslim holy city of Mecca, Saudi Arabia. (Image: AP)

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 A relatively few numbers of Muslims pray around the Kaaba, the cubic building at the Grand Mosque, in the Muslim holy city of Mecca, Saudi Arabia. (Image: AP)
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A relatively few numbers of Muslims pray around the Kaaba, the cubic building at the Grand Mosque, in the Muslim holy city of Mecca, Saudi Arabia. (Image: AP)

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 Workers sterilize the ground in front of the Kaaba, the cubic building at the Grand Mosque, in the Muslim holy city of Mecca, Saudi Arabia. (Image: AP)
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Workers sterilize the ground in front of the Kaaba, the cubic building at the Grand Mosque, in the Muslim holy city of Mecca, Saudi Arabia. (Image: AP)

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 A Muslim pilgrim feeds pigeons outside the Grand Mosque, in the Muslim holy city of Mecca, Saudi Arabia. (Image: AP)
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A Muslim pilgrim feeds pigeons outside the Grand Mosque, in the Muslim holy city of Mecca, Saudi Arabia. (Image: AP)

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 Muslim pilgrims circumnavigate around the Kaaba, the cubic building at the Grand Mosque, during the minor pilgrimage, known as Umrah in the Muslim holy city of Mecca, Saudi Arabia. (Image: AP)
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Muslim pilgrims circumnavigate around the Kaaba, the cubic building at the Grand Mosque, during the minor pilgrimage, known as Umrah in the Muslim holy city of Mecca, Saudi Arabia. (Image: AP)

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 A Saudi policeman stands guard in front of the Kaaba, the cubic building at the Grand Mosque, in the Muslim holy city of Mecca, Saudi Arabia. (Image: AP)
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A Saudi policeman stands guard in front of the Kaaba, the cubic building at the Grand Mosque, in the Muslim holy city of Mecca, Saudi Arabia. (Image: AP)

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