Grand Mosque Implements Ban on Children’s Strollers: Here’s What You Need to Know

In a recent development, the government of Saudi Arabia has introduced a new policy regarding the entry of children’s strollers within the Holy Kaaba’s circumambulating area, also known as Mataf. The decision, announced by the General Authority for the Care of the Affairs of the Grand Mosque and the Prophet’s Mosque, aims to enhance safety and streamline crowd management within the premises.
According to the announcement, children’s strollers will no longer be allowed on the ground floor of Mataf. However, designated areas within the Grand Mosque in Makkah, including the upper floors of Mataf, have been specified where strollers are permitted. Additionally, access to Mas’a, the running area between Safa and Marwa, is allowed for strollers through the King Fahd Expansion Area, except during overcrowded conditions on Mataf and Mas’a floors.
This decision comes as part of the government’s efforts to finalize arrangements for the upcoming Hajj pilgrimage, which is scheduled to be held in June this year. With an expected influx of around 2 million pilgrims from across the world, the authorities are implementing cautionary measures to ensure the safety and comfort of worshippers, especially during the crowded Hajj and Ramadan months.
In line with these efforts, the authorities have also signed agreements with countries, including Pakistan, to facilitate the smooth conduct of Hajj. Moreover, plans are underway to divide Masjid al-Haram into coded zones, aiming to enhance pilgrim experience, streamline movement, and optimize the allocation of resources across the holy site.
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The Grand Mosque in Mecca, home to the Holy Kaaba, holds immense significance for millions of Muslims worldwide who gather to offer prayers, perform Umrah, and undertake the sacred journey of Hajj. Last year, despite challenges posed by the pandemic, the kingdom welcomed over 2 million pilgrims for Hajj and more than 13 million Umrah pilgrims, signaling a gradual return to normalcy with the lifting of social distancing protocols.