COVID-19: Saudi Prince, 150 Royals Infected

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As many as 150 members of the Saudi royal family may have been infected with coronavirus, according to a report in The New York Times.

The most senior member of the royal family to be infected, according to the report, is the Governor of Riyadh, Prince Faisal bin Bandar bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, a nephew of King Salman. The Times said Prince Faisal was in intensive care and that several dozen other members of the royal family had fallen ill after being infected with the virus. The email instructed doctors to move out all chronic patients with only “top urgent cases” to be accepted. The Times said the hospital was “preparing as many as 500 beds for an expected influx of other royals and those closest to them.”Saudi Arabia reported 355 new coronavirus cases in the last 24 hours and three new virus-related deaths on Thursday. According to the Ministry of Health, the total number of cases in the Kingdom of 33 million people as of Thursday is 3,287, while the death toll has climbed to 44.

Saudi Arabia’s health minister, Dr. Tawfig al-Rabiah, said on Tuesday that the number of cases in the Kingdom could reach between 10,000 to 200,000 within weeks, depending on adherence to government guidelines.

This week, the Kingdom began imposing a 24-hour curfew in the capital and several other cities, including Jeddah and Mecca. It has already barred travel to and from Riyadh, Mecca and Medina, suspended prayers at mosques and closed Islam’s holiest sites to pilgrims to limit infections.

By New York Times

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