Updated on 8 July 2014
Pilgrims stream into Mecca despite MERS fears
Singapore: Undeterred by MERS, Muslim pilgrims from around the world are flocking the holy city of Mecca in Saudi Arabia to perform their holy pilgrimage. MERS sweeped through the world in a deadly outbreak earlier this year, killing 30 percent of the victims.
MERS first appeared in Saudi Arabia in April 2012, and the kingdom remains the worst-hit country. Despite several warnings issued by health authorities of different countries with the Ramadan month beginning, hundreds of Muslims are streaming into the borders of Saudi Arabia to perform the umrah pilgrimage.
A 45-year-old Abdullah, pilgrim from Malaysia said in a report, "We were instructed by the authorities to undertake precautions and we are following the same." He said that he applied disinfectants as he entered the Grand Mosque in Mecca.
Local authorities in Mecca are distributing leaflets and brochures containing advice on hygiene and measures to prevent the risk of infection by the coronavirus.
A Tunisian pilgrim shrugged off MERS fears in a report claiming that it was not always easy to get visa to perform pilgrimage. She mentioned that she had complied with the necessary precautions.