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Hajj 2023: Pilgrims still required to have 2 COVID-19 vaccine shots and a booster

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NAIROBI—Muslims planning to perform Hajj in 2023 are still required to have received two COVID-19 vaccine shots and one booster jab.

According to Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Health, worshippers from all countries must comply with this requirement, as well as other local preventative regulations, while performing Hajj.

Hajj is one of the five pillars of Islam and is a pilgrimage that every adult Muslim must make at least once in their lifetime if they have the means.

The approved vaccines in Saudi Arabia include Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna, Astrazeneca, Covovax, Nuvaxovid, Sinophram, Sinovac, Covaxin, Sputnik-V, and Janssen (1 shot).

Those who have not yet been vaccinated can do so up to 10 days before the start of the Hajj season, as reported by the Saudi Gazette. It also mentioned that taking a booster dose is mandatory.

This year, the Hajj season will take place from June 26 to July 1. Pilgrims must also be vaccinated against seasonal influenza and meningitis.

 

Earlier this year, Saudi Arabia confirmed that it will no longer impose age and travel limitations and that the number of visiting pilgrims will return to pre-pandemic levels. In 2019, an estimated 2.5 million Muslims performed Hajj in Saudi Arabia.

Since the onset of the pandemic, various restrictions have been introduced to limit the spread of COVID-19. These limitations previously meant that only visitors between the ages of 18 and 65 were allowed to perform Hajj.
However, in December, Saudi Arabia lifted the COVID vaccine requirements for Umrah pilgrims traveling from selected countries

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