Annual Muslim pilgrimage of Hajj begins in Saudi Arabia

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The annual Muslim pilgrimage of #Hajj has begun in Saudi Arabia. For the second year running, the kingdom has drastically restricted who can attend amid attempts to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

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About This Source - CGTN

This story is an English language news item from CGTN. CGTN is a Chinese state-funded broadcaster.

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  • In This Story: Hajj

    The Hajj is an annual Islamic pilgrimage to Mecca, Saudi Arabia, the holiest city for Muslims. Hajj is a mandatory religious duty for Muslims, who visit the Kaaba, a cubic structure at the centre of the Grand Mosque.

    Because the Islamic calendar is lunar and the Islamic year is about eleven days shorter than the Gregorian year, the Gregorian date of Hajj changes from year to year. In 2020 AD (1441 AH), Dhu al-Hijjah extends from 22 July to 19 August.

    According to the official published statistics between 2000 and 2019, the average number of attendees is 2,269,145 per year, in which 1,564,710 come from outside Saudi Arabia and 671,983 are local.

    In June 2020, while not cancelling the Hajj outright, the Saudi Government announced that they would only welcome “very limited numbers” of pilgrims who are residents of Saudi Arabia due to the global COVID-19 pandemic.

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  • In This Story: Saudi Arabia

    Saudi Arabia, officially the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, is a country in Western Asia constituting the bulk of the Arabian Peninsula.

    Saudi Arabia also has one of the world’s youngest populations, with approximately 50 percent of its population of 34.2 million being under 25 years old.

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