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Ramadan pilgrimage season in Saudi Arabia mostly free from Mers

Published on Aug 3, 2014 8:15 PM
 
Muslim pilgrims wear nose and mouth masks on the way to Islam's holiest shrine, the Kaaba, in the Grand Mosque in the Muslim holy city of Mecca in Saudi Arabia on May 27, 2014. Saudi Arabia reported 10 confirmed new cases of a deadly respiratory disease during Islam's fasting month of Ramadan, and subsequent Eid al-Fitra holiday, after fears that an influx of pilgrims over the period might spread the infection more widely. -- PHOTO: AFP

RIYADH (Reuters) - Saudi Arabia reported 10 confirmed new cases of a deadly respiratory disease during Islam's fasting month of Ramadan, and subsequent Eid al-Fitra holiday, after fears that an influx of pilgrims over the period might spread the infection more widely.

Notices of any new confirmed cases are published at the end of every day by the Health Ministry. Ramadan ended a week ago and the Eid al-Fitra holiday ran until late last week.

Hundreds of people were infected by Middle East respiratory syndrome (Mers) in the kingdom in April and May, raising concerns about the pilgrimage in Ramadan and during October's Haj, when millions of people will travel to Mecca and Medina.

Mers, which is thought to originate in camels, causes coughing, fever and pneumonia in some and has killed around 40 percent of people it has infected in the kingdom.

 
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