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Saudi to jail overstaying pilgrims

Saudi Arabia on Monday started a crackdown on foreign pilgrims overstaying their Hajj visas, local newspaper Okaz reported.

Nigerian pilgrims going to the  last Hajj in Mecca
Nigerian pilgrims going to the last Hajj in Mecca

Offenders will have to pay an equivalent of 13,329 U.S. dollars in fine, face six months in jail and deportation, the paper said.

Those who transport, recruit or shelter overstayed pilgrims will face up to 26,662 dollars in fine and six months in jail.

The visa for pilgrims, or Hajj visa, cannot be renewed. Those with such visas cannot take up jobs or go outside Mecca.

Saudi authorities said round 1.8 million pilgrims took part in the last pilgrimage season. The majority of them were foreigners.


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