Riyadh. More than six weeks after Saudi Arabia registered its first case, the coronavirus is causing panic in the country’s royal family. According to a person close to the royal family, about 150 people in the family have been infected with the coronavirus. They also include people from the distant royal family. Shah Salman of Saudi Arabia has isolated himself in an island palace in Jeddah city on the Red Sea for his protection.
Shah Salman’s son Crown Prince Muhammad bin Salman along with many of his ministers moved to a remote site on the same coast, where he promised to build a future city called Neom. In order to control the spread of Corona, Saudi Arabian authorities have imposed travel restrictions and prohibited pilgrimage to the holy sites of Muslims, including Mecca-Medina.
Authorities have also banned all types of air and ground travel in and out of the country. They have also imposed a 24-hour lockdown on all their big cities. Under this, people have been allowed short visits to the nearest grocery or drug stores. Officials have indicated that they are considering the possibility of canceling the annual Haj pilgrimage scheduled for this summer.
The Haj pilgrimage is a pillar of the Muslim faith. This journey has been held every year without interruption since 1798, when Napoleon invaded Egypt. So far, 41 people have died and 2,795 have been infected by Corona in Saudi Arabia, the world’s largest oil exporter. At the same time, the number of corona virus patients has crossed 1.5 million worldwide.