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Saudi Arabia cuts Indonesia's hajj quota by 20% JAKARTA - The Saudi government has cut Indonesia`s hajj pilgrimage quota this year by 20 percent or 42,200 pilgrims from 211,000 to 168,000 pilgrims, Religious Affairs Minister Suryadarma Ali said.

"We call on the 180,000 would-be hajj pilgrims who have got their turn to go to the Holy Land this year to patiently wait for policies to be issued by the Religious Affairs Ministry after it holds a meeting with the Saudi Arabian government. We hope would-be pilgrims would give us time," the minister said here on Wednesday.

He said that the religious affairs ministry would assure the departure in 2014 of would-be hajj pilgrims who were affected by the Saudi policy and could not go to the Holy Land this year. If next year, there is an increase in hajj pilgrimage cost, they would not be charged with the difference.

"The minister of religious affairs will make diplomatic efforts and discuss it with the Saudi government immediately, particularly with the Saudi minister for hajj affairs and with other relevant parties. We will also ask for dispensation," Suryadarma said.

The Saudi government`s policy to cut the hajj quota was contained in the Saudi religious minister`s letter on June 6, 2013 which said that the quota was cut because there was a delay in the completion of the rehabilitation of the Haram Mosque. It was cut to ensure the safety of hajj pilgrims.

The minister said that the Saudi government cut not only the quota of Indonesia but also of all countries which sent hajj pilgrims to Saudi Arabia. The quota of respective countries was cut by 20 percent from the basic quota as agreed by member countries of the Organization of Islamic Conference (OIC).

"The delay in the completion of the rehabilitation of the Haram Mosque reduced the mosque`s accommodating capacity for the tawaf (encircling the cubical shrine) ritual. It could initially accommodate some 48,000 pilgrims for the tawaf ritual per hour. With the delay, the accommodating capacity dropped to 22,000 pilgrims only," he said.

The minister said that the reduction in the quota of hajj pilgrims would be done proportionally for all provinces in the country. But the ministry hopes that younger ones would give the chance to aging would-be pilgrims.


Related blog entries (category 'Religion') Related blog entries (category 'Religion'):
07 June 2013 · President invites all parties to strengthen inter-faith tolerance
07 April 2013 · President asks people to preserve tolerance
02 April 2013 · Hajj pilgrimage cost for 2013 down $90
20 February 2013 · Indonesia to host Muslim-Christian leaders conference
03 January 2013 · PPATK suspects irregularities in hajj pilgrimage spending
28 December 2012 · President Yudhoyono attends Christmas celebrations

Related blog entries (category 'Religion') Tags: hajji, quota, cut, Saudi Arabia


Posted in Religion @ 12 June 2013 19:56 CET by Blog Bot · 'Blog' RSS feed · permalink






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