Coronavirus: Oman bans all Eid Al Fitr activities to control spread

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Hind Al Soulia - Riyadh - Oman on Monday banned all gathering and other activities for Eid Al Fitr to prevent the spread of coronavirus in the sultanate.

The ban, which was decided at a meeting of Oman's Supreme Committee on Covid-19, includes livestock auctions, prayers, gatherings and group celebrations to mark Eid Al Fitr.

The committee also made wearing face masks mandatory in all public places and empowered police to arrest or fine violators on the spot.

The country reported 193 new Covid-19 cases on Monday, comprising 72 Omanis and 121 expatriates. The health ministry said 31 patients had recovered during the past 24 hours, taking the total number of recoveries to 1,496.

Oman has the least number of infected individuals in the Gulf region with 5,379 cases and 23 deaths.

In Saudi Arabia, which has the highest number of cases, there was an outpouring of tributes for a Saudi nurse who died from the coronavirus late on Sunday after treating Covid-19 patients in Makkah.

Khaled bin Abdullah Al Hosseini, 43, was among eight deaths from the virus reported by health ministry on Monday. He had worked in the medical field for 15 years and was described as a dedicated professional.

“Khaled was working on the frontlines to save lives at King Abdulaziz Hospital in Makkah, he isolated himself for 26 days from his family, wife and seven-year-old son, just after the outbreak of the pandemic,” his brother, Hussein bin Abdullah Al Hosseini, told local newspapers.

Al Hosseini suffered from diabetes, he said.

Social media users sent tributes the nurse's family on social media and the hashtag “Khaled Al Hosseini the nurse” was trending.

Saudi Arabia's Health Minister, Tawfiq Al Rabiah, also sent his condolences in a message posted on Twitter.

"My sincere condolences to the family of Khaled Al Hosseini, the nurse, and I ask God to forgive him and have mercy on him," Mr Al Rabiah said.

The Saudi Health Ministry said it recorded 2,593 new cases of the virus since Sunday, the fifth consecutive daily increase above 2,000.

The total number of cases in the kingdom is now 57,345, with 320 deaths.

Saudi Arabia will enforce a 24-hour nationwide curfew during the five-day Eid festival this weekend at the end of the holy month of Ramadan.

The kingdom accounts for nearly half of the more than 130,000 cases in Gulf countries.

Kuwait reported 841 new infected cases on Monday, taking its total to 15,691.

The number of fatalities rose to 118 with six more deaths since Sunday, the health ministry said.

The ministry said that 246 patients had recovered in the previous 24 hours, bringing the total to 4,339, while 161 patients were in intensive care.

Qatar, which has the second-highest number of cases in the region, reported 1,365 new cases, taking the total to 33,969. The health said there were 529 more recoveries, taking the total to 4,899, while the death toll remained at at 15.

Kuwait and Qatar on Sunday announced heavy penalties for not wearing face masks in public, including jail terms and fines as high as thousands of dollars.

Bahrain's coronavirus infections rose by 200, while 19 patients recovered. The health ministry said the new cases "included 121 of incoming workers and 79 of those who mingled with infected persons".

Only eight of the 4,215 current cases are intensive, the ministry said, while the number of recovered patients stood at 2,929.

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Ramadan around the world

Followers of the Senegalese Mouride brotherhood, an order of Sufi Islam, attend Muslim Friday prayers at West Africa's largest mosque the Massalikul Jinaan, in Dakar, Senegal. AP Photo

A follower of the Senegalese Mouride brotherhood, an order of Sufi Islam, wears a mask during Muslim Friday prayers at West Africa's largest mosque the Massalikul Jinaan, in Dakar, Senegal. AP Photo

Iraqis shop for Eid al-Fitr at a market in Baghdad's Karada district, Iraq. EPA

A Palestinian vendor sells corns before Ramadan Iftar time along the beach during a heat wave amid concerns about the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), in Gaza. REUTERS

Shiite Muslims gather, albeit in fewer numbers due to the COVID-19 pandemic, at the Imam Ali shrine in the central Iraqi holy city of Najaf, to mark Lailat al-Qadr, a night in the holy month of Ramadan during which the Koran was first revealed to the Prophet Mohammed in the seventh century. AFP

Muslim worshippers offer the evening prayer Tarawih as they maintain social distancing at al-Azhar Mosque in the Egyptian capital Cairo, during the Muslim fasting month of Ramadan. AFP

Palestinian families wait to have their Iftar breaking a Ramadan fasting day on the beach of Gaza City. AP Photo

Vendors clean fish for costumers at a fish market in the eastern Libyan port city of Benghazi during the last week of the Muslim fasting month of Ramadan. AFP

Muslims wearing protective gloves and face masks pray in the streets of Lavapies neighborhood during the Muslim fasting month of Ramadan, in Madrid, Spain. EPA

A Palestinian man, wearing protective face masks and gloves during the COVID-19 pandemic, carries a tray of baked traditional cookies in preparation for the upcoming Eid al-Fitr holiday which marks the end of the Islamic holy month of Ramadan, in the southern Gaza Strip city of Rafah. AFP

A Palestinian boy carries a tray of traditional cookies in preparation for the upcoming Eid al-Fitr holiday which marks the end of the Islamic holy month of Ramadan, in the southern Gaza Strip city of Rafah. AFP

Migrant people walk towards the ferry terminal to go back to their home places ahead of the Eid-Al-Fitr festival which marks the end of the Islamic holy month of Ramadan, during a government-imposed lockdown as a preventive measure against the COVID-19 coronavirus, in Munshiganj on the outskirts of Dhaka. AFP

Updated: May 18, 2020 08:00 PM

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