On this 4th day of the month of Ramadan the Saudi MOH reports a single MERS case in Tabuk - near the Jordanian border - listed as a primary case with contact with camels.
While new cases are always a concern, this case is hundreds of kilometers away from the Holy sites where religious pilgrims are currently gathering.
All able bodied Muslims are required to make at least one major pilgrimage to Mecca during their lifetime, at the time of the hajj. This is known as the fifth pillar of Islam, and is one of the duties incumbent upon all Muslims.
The faithful may also make `lesser pilgrimages’, called omra (or Umrah), at other times of the year. These minor pilgrimages don’t absolve the faithful of making the hajj journey unless they take place during the holy month of Ramadan (this year: June 5th-July 5th).The Hajj, which is a much bigger mass gathering event and will see several million international visitors, takes place this year in early September.