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The Muslim Council of Britain (MCB) says the guidance has been produced in partnership with healthcare professionals, health and safety specialists and British Islamic Medical Association (BIMA).

The Omicron variant has been reported in 23 countries, according to the World Health Organisation (WHO). Yet, it was still said to be ‘very early days’ in terms of understanding the new variant and the affects it may have.

The MCB called for a set of key control measures Mosques should be re-introduce to ensure attendees and the vulnerable are kept safe.

The guidance asks for worshippers to wear face coverings inside and to bring your own prayer mat. There are also calls for people to be ‘mindful of others in mosque that may prefer to socially distance’ and to ‘avoid hugging and shaking hands’.

Additional Jummah (Friday) prayers should be allocated to ensure capacity is reduced. Mosque should also look to manage capacity and reduce large numbers of people in a single space.

The congregations should also be told the benefits of being vaccinated to local communities.

Mosques have ended social distancing measures as worshippers cannot be forced to wear masks as is government advice. Funeral prayers are being allowed to take place without restrictions in all religious buildings.

The MCB had in the summer advised mosques following the easing of restrictions that they should continue to adopt a level of covid safety. It had said: “As Muslim communities are predominantly from ethnic minorities and more likely to die from Covid, wearing masks is an unobtrusive way of protecting each other whilst in a crowded indoor mosque hall.

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