Saudi Arabia suspends public attendance of sports competitions over coronavirus

Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Sports announced on Friday suspending public attendance at all sports competitions and events starting Saturday. This comes as part of the Kingdom’s efforts to limit the spread of the coronavirus.

The ministry said that this is as a precautionary measure to stop spreading the coronavirus in places of mass crowds. The suspension will extend until further notice.

It added that it will coordinate with clubs that will play Saturday as part of the matches of Prince Mohammed bin Salman Cup, to reimburse fans for their tickets.

Saudi Arabia confirmed five coronavirus cases as of Thursday; all of whom arrived in the Kingdom through Bahrain or Kuwait, originally coming from Iran. Riyadh condemned Iran for allowing the Saudi nationals entry to its territory without stamping their passports.

Measures taken to combat coronavirus

The Kingdom put in place mechanisms in order to combat the spread of the coronavirus:

It urged its citizens who traveled to Iran recently to declare that to the authorities by end of day March 7. Otherwise, they will face legal action against them according to the Travel Documents Law and its related regulations.

The Kingdom also reiterated that Saudi citizens should not travel to Iran for any reason. It stressed that serious legal actions will be taken against those who commit this act going forward.

Saudi Arabia announced on March 4 temporarily banning entry of its nationals and residents to Mecca to perform Umrah pilgrimage.

The Kingdom also halted on March 2 all exports of medical and laboratory products and equipment used to detect or prevent coronavirus infection via its land, sea and air ports.

The health ministry also said on March 1 it had prepared 25 hospitals and 8,000 beds to handle any coronavirus cases.

The foreign ministry announced on February 27 the temporary suspension of entry for individuals to perform Umrah pilgrimage in Mecca. Besides, tourists traveling from countries where the coronavirus poses a risk as determined by the Kingdom’s health authorities.

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