Saudi: Hajj free of Ebola amid protective measures

AP News
Posted: Oct 06, 2014 11:23 AM
Saudi: Hajj free of Ebola amid protective measures

MINA, Saudi Arabia (AP) — Saudi Arabia's acting health minister says this year's hajj has been free of Ebola and other contagious diseases because of measures taken by the kingdom to protect more than 2 million pilgrims who took part in the annual Islamic pilgrimage.

Adel Faqih told reporters from the city of Mina, outside of Mecca, that the country deployed thousands of health workers and performed data screening on pilgrims upon arrival to the kingdom.

The hajj, which lasts around five days, ends Monday.

Faqih told The Associated Press that the kingdom's ban on issuing visas to people from Sierra Leone, Liberia and Guinea would remain in place until authorities are comfortable that there is no longer an Ebola epidemic. Those west African countries have been the hardest hit by the virus.