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Muslims offered the first Friday prayer shoulder to shoulder today in the Holy cities of Makkah and Madina and elsewhere in Saudi Arabia after the government eased Covid-19 restrictions in the country.

More than 4,000 officials, men, and women had been deputed to oversee the worshippers and to ensure precautionary measures for Friday prayers at the Grand Mosque.

Sheikh Abdul Rahman al-Sudais, head of the Haramain Sharifain, instructed the authorities to ensure appropriate arrangements for the worshippers. 

Wearing a mask was mandatory and thermal cameras were deployed at various areas to screen out potentially sick people. 

The inner courtyards and walkways of the Grand Mosque were constantly sanitized to ensure a safe environment for worshippers. 

More than 50,000 bottles of Zamzam water were provided for worshippers at different spots within the Grand Mosque. 

The mosque administration said that 50 additional entrances to the Grand Mosque were to be opened on Friday for worshippers. 

On October 17, the Saudi government removed social distancing restrictions, and worshippers were allowed to pray without gaps in the holy mosques of Makkah and Madina and across the kingdom.

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