Saudi Arabia Removes Mandatory PCR and Quarantine, Ministry of Religion Will Adjust

Jakarta, IDN Times – The Ministry of Religion of the Republic of Indonesia will immediately harmonize the policy for Umrah departures with the Ministry of Health and the COVID-19 Handling Task Force. This is in response to Saudi Arabia’s policy of removing PCR and quarantine obligations for those who come to their country.

“We hope that the Ministry of Health and the National Disaster Prevention Agency (BNPB) can take harmonizing steps,” said Director General of Hajj and Umrah at the Ministry of Religion Hilman Latief in a statement. AMONGSunday (6/3/2022).

1. The Ministry of Religion is optimistic that there will be adjustments

Saudi Arabia Removes Mandatory PCR and Quarantine, Ministry of Religion Will Adjust Umrah Policy Director General of Hajj and Umrah Implementation of the Ministry of Religion, Hilman Latief (doc. Ministry of Religion)

Hilman added that the Ministry of Religion will talk to various parties regarding the reciprocal policy between the Saudi and Indonesian Governments for Hajj and Umrah matters. He is optimistic that there will be policy adjustments in the country.

“Regarding Saudi Arabia’s decision to revoke most of its protocol policies, especially with regard to quarantine and PCR, there will also be consequences for the policy of organizing Umrah in Indonesia,” said Hilman.

“I am optimistic that there will be a policy alignment soon. Moreover, Indonesia has now started to make adjustments to its quarantine policy,” he said.

Read also: No longer keep the distance in prayer at the Grand Mosque, what about Umrah?

2. One door Umrah departure will be reviewed

Saudi Arabia Removes Mandatory PCR and Quarantine, Ministry of Religion Will Adjust Umrah Policy Umrah pilgrims returning to carry out their first Umrah in Makkah during the COVID-19 Pandemic (Doc. Consulate General in Jeddah/Fauzy Chusny)

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In addition, Hilman said, the one-door policy for the departure of Umrah pilgrims from the hajj dormitories will also be reviewed and adjusted. The Ministry of Religion will immediately coordinate with the COVID-19 Handling Task Force and the Ministry of Health in charge of technical policy settings related to preventing the spread of COVID-19.

This coordination is needed considering that there are a number of provisions that must be compromised.

“So, don’t get there, there is no need for quarantine, we are still forced to quarantine. Or don’t get there, there is no need for PCR, we have to use PCR for departure, and so on,” he explained.

Hilman explained that the Ministry of Religion was in a position to prepare the implementation of policies related to the prevention of COVID-19. Including, if later Indonesia also revoked the one-door policy as it had been running so far.

3. Umrah pilgrims are not required to PCR and quarantine upon arrival in Saudi

Saudi Arabia Removes Mandatory PCR and Quarantine, Ministry of Religion Will Adjust Umrah Policy Illustration of Umrah pilgrims (Doc. Ministry of Religion)

The Head of Umrah of the Muslim Association of Hajj and Umrah Organizers of the Republic of Indonesia (AMPHURI), Zaky Zakaria, said that for the implementation of Umrah it was still necessary to obtain permission from the Government of Saudi Arabia via an application.

However, Umrah pilgrims are no longer required to undergo PCR or antigen tests and quarantine when entering Saudi Arabia.

“After I confirmed to the muassas that the quarantine was lifted, there was no need for PCR, antigens and other easing procedures were included for Umrah pilgrims, even Garuda (Indonesia) had announced the regulation,” said Zaky to reporters, Sunday (6/3). /2022).

Also Read: Thousands of Indonesian Congregants Exposed to COVID-19 During Umrah During a Pandemic