By BITOON A RANAO
The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has enforced a 24-hour daily curfew in several cities and governorates of the Kingdom effective on Monday, reports said.
All entries to and exits from the cities of Riyadh, Tabuk, Dammam, Dhahran, and Hafouf and the governorates of Jeddah, Taif, Qatif and Al-Khobar are closed effective immediately until further notice, Saudi Press Agency reported on Monday quoting an official source at the Ministry of Interior.
The ministry had earlier enforced a 24-hour daily curfew in Makkah and Madinah, since Thursday, the reports said.
Curfew exemptions still apply to those in vital public and private sectors such as security, military and media. Those who work in health services are also excluded from the curfew.
Residents in all these cities may leave their homes only out of absolute necessity such as buying food and for medical care only between the hours of 6 a.m. till 3 p.m. Residents going out must remain within their residential area.
Vehicle transportation will be restricted within their residential neighborhoods to meet necessary needs and that is only to one person, in addition to the driver of the vehicle so as to bring down contact with others to the minimum. It is also banned the practice of any commercial activities within the residential neighborhoods except for pharmacies and food supply stores, gas stations, banking services, maintenance and operation works, plumbers and electrical and air-conditioning technicians, water delivery services as well as sewage tankers.
The Ministry of Interior called upon everyone that the exit is for adults only and that is in necessary cases so as to ensure that children are not exposed to the causes of transmission. It urged all citizens and expatriates to use express delivery services through smart phone Apps to order for home delivery of food and medical supplies.
The official emphasized that the new measures were taken as part of the Kingdom’s efforts to confront coronavirus pandemic, and in implementation of the recommendations of competent health authorities to upgrade the degree of precautionary and preventive measures in all these cities and governorates to protect the health and safety of citizens and expatriates. It also called on everyone to be fully aware of their individual responsibilities in following instructions and adhering to quarantine measures to serve the public interest.
Meanwhile, Jeddah Mayoralty has shut down Danube Bakery in Al-Salam Mall and Zadakum Supermarket in Al-Salama district after discovering two confirmed cases of coronavirus. The mayoralty urged all those who visited these food outlets during the last two weeks to remain in home quarantine and follow the preventive measures. It also called on those who have any symptoms of infection such as breathing problems to immediately approach the nearest health facility or contact the Call Center of the Ministry of Health No. 937.