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इंडियन आवाज़     07 Apr 2020 02:20:36      انڈین آواز
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Religious prayers restricted across Middle East amid coronavirus fears

WEB DESK

Religious authorities have decided to cancel or limit weekly prayer gatherings across the Middle East today to help prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus.

Christian, Muslim and Jewish leaders in Jerusalem said services would continue to be held but moved to limit indoor gatherings after the Israeli Health Ministry said they should not exceed 100 people.

Hard-hit Iran has already cancelled Friday prayers in major cities, and on Friday Kuwait said all public prayers would be cancelled until further notice.

Egypt has ordered all mosques to limit Friday prayers, including the weekly sermon, to no more than 15 minutes. The prayers usually last around an hour.

Iraq, which has reported more than 80 confirmed cases of the coronavirus and eight deaths so far, has scrapped Friday prayers in the Shiite holy city of Karbala.

In Lebanon, Friday prayers have been temporarily suspended in all Shiite mosques. The moves to limit prayers come on the heels of several cancellations of sporting events, conferences and other gatherings worldwide.

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