The Ministry of Endowments and Islamic Affairs (Awqaf) has reaffirmed on its Twitter page that prayers in mosques within Qatar will remain suspended until further notice in continuation of the official coronavirus (COVID-19) precautionary measures. Awqaf was responding to news circulating on social media which shows pictures of worshippers praying while continuing to follow social distancing and other coronavirus (COVID-19) preventive measures
Awqaf clarifies that the pictures/infographics (see images below) are a proactive educational material that have been prepared to inform the community how prayers will be conducted in mosques when they do reopen in accordance with the requirements determined by the relevant authorities in Qatar.
On 17 March 2020, Awqaf directed the closure of mosques and the suspension of all congressional prayers including the obligatory five prayers and the Friday prayers, until the condition of safety and tranquility for the worshippers is met, as part of the precautionary measures taken by Qatar to prevent and contain the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19), according to QNA.
The decision was guided by a fatwa issued by the Ministry's Sharia Committee, which reads:
"In the event that the health authorities acknowledge that there is an epidemic and that the possibility of its spread in public places is certain, and that its danger is real, the gatherings can be prevented."
The Ministry said this measure was taken in compliance with the highest purposes of the Sharia, the most important of which is souls preservation, and protection for worshipers and society from any harm posed by the virus spread.
Calls to prayers (Adhan) are still being made in all the country's mosques. In the meantime, the Ministry will continue to communicate with the competent authorities to reopen the mosques as soon as the threat of the virus spread is over.
Cover image credit: Awqaf
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