Endowments minister suspends directors for failure to comply with public prayer ban

Yemen’s minister of endowments and guidance has suspended the directors of several of the ministry’s governorate-level offices, after they failed to comply with the ministry's decision to suspend public Friday prayers and all activities in mosques in response to the coronavirus pandemic. 

The governorate directors of the Ministry of Endowment and Guidance in Taiz, Marib, and Wadi Hadhramawt (which is administratively distinct from coastal Hadhramawt) were ordered to suspend their work by Minister Judge Ahmed Attieh. The minister made the order after the three directors failed to commit to implementing the decision to suspend prayers in mosques, an official in the ministry told Almasdar Online.

More specifically, the source said, the three directors violated the minister’s decision by allowing public Friday prayers to be held. The measure was taken by the Ministry of Endowment and Guidance earlier in the week in order to support social distancing practices in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic.

The move, however, has proven divisive, and pictures circulating online of a large gathering of worshippers in the yard of the historic Al-Mudhaffar Mosque in Taiz city, which was used for Friday prayer after the mosque’s doors were locked, provoked debate over the government’s response to the coronavirus.



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