Makkah (IINA) – The Ministry of Hajj on Sunday distributed camp sites for local Hajj companies in Mina to prepare accommodation for pilgrims who stay in the tent city for up to five days during the pilgrimage.
The ministry’s undersecretary, Hussein Al-Sharif, said the companies were allotted tents and specific locations early this year compared to previous years so they can make preparations well in advance before the pilgrims arrive. Preparations for Haj are in full swing, with around 10 ministries and government departments set to begin field work at the Holy Sites and getting offices ready to serve about a total of 3 million pilgrims expected this year. The agencies include the ministries of Municipal and Rural Affairs, Transport, Commerce, Interior, Haj, Water and Electricity and Health, the Tawafa establishments and the General Syndicate of Cars, which is responsible for the transportation of pilgrims. The ministries and departments are expected to begin sending field teams to the Holy Sites soon to prepare their offices and locations ready for early September.
This year, around 20,000 pilgrims are expected from Yemen, an increase of a 1,000 pilgrims compared to last year. Undersecretary at the Yemeni Haj Ministry Munir Mohammed Dabwan said Yemeni pilgrims would benefit from the numerous facilities being provided by the Saudi government to his country. Dabwan also said the number of the Yemeni pilgrims was within the allowed quota. The undersecretary expects the first batch of pilgrims from Yemen to arrive in the Kingdom on Aug. 30. “The arrival of the Yemeni pilgrims will be completed before Sept. 18.”
This year’s Haj will start tentatively on Sept. 21. Dabwan added that around 80 percent of Yemeni pilgrims have registered on the Saudi Haj Ministry’s e-portal. “We are currently discussing the possibility of granting the Yemeni pilgrims their Haj visas at the Saudi inlets, or setting up a special Saudi consular office inside the Yemeni territories,” he said. According to the undersecretary, pilgrims were chosen from the country’s all 22 provinces. “Not a single province was excluded,” he added. He said issues concerning the accommodation and transport of the Yemeni pilgrims were discussed during meetings with relevant Saudi authorities held as early as March.