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Religious Affairs Minister Announces “Restricted” Congregational Prayers; Mosques Will Not Close

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Federal Minister for Religious Affairs Noorul Haq Qadri has stated that congregational prayers in the country will be “restricted” but they will not be stopped. He further said that a limited number of healthy people will pray at mosques and Friday prayers will be shortened, but that the government will not be closing down mosques.

Noorul Haq Qadri announced these arrangements while addressing a press conference with other officials of the government.

The Minister noted that old and sick people have been asked to pray at home with their families.

In support of such measures, he cited the fact that other Muslim countries have taken wide-ranging measures to protect populations against the pandemic – including Saudi Arabia, Turkey, Egypt, Morocco and others. He cited the closure of the Holy Haram in Makkah, the Al-Aqsa mosque in Jerusalem and the holy shrines at Karbala.

He also referred to the fatwa issued by Egypt’s Al-Azhar specifically on the request of Pakistan’s President Alvi. It is to be noted that this fatwa allowed for suspension of the Friday prayers altogether.

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