Published on : Wednesday, March 25, 2020
On Tuesday, the Cairo government introduced some new set of rules as measures to deal with the coronavirus pandemic. The brand new measures declared a two-week overnight curfew, an extension of the closure of schools and universities. The city has also been ordered to shut all its restaurants and cafes completely. With the brand new rules, the country’s lifestyle was bound to change.
Earlier, government authorities banned large gatherings and international air travel. It also closed all of Cairo’s historical sites. Tourism is one of the greatest contributors to Egypt’s economy. The important tourism sector of Egypt has been harshly affected since the outbreak of the coronavirus. Cairo alone was expecting a record year for visitors, which has now been interrupted by the pandemic.
After years of struggle, the overall economy was finally showing slow signs of recovery. A large part of this development can be credited to tourism. However, with the virus spread, the tourism industry, as well as the economy, might be under severe threat.
One of the major setbacks in tourism came with the closure of the Al Hussein Mosque in Cairo. On Tuesday, no worshippers were noticed in an otherwise crowded religious venue. Police have already been given the responsibility to stop anyone from entering mosques. President Abdel Fattah El Sisi already mentioned that any individual who fails to abide by the rules will be dealt with in a strict and decisive manner.
The area surrounding Al Hussein mosque in Cairo is one of the bustling tourist destinations in the capital. Thousands of pilgrims travel from across Egypt to Cairo to assemble at the venue for prayers. Another famous tourist venue, the Khan El Khalili bazaar was noticeably deserted. The usual long queues of tourist buses that bring in numerous visitors from foreign countries were also completely missing. Most of the shops in the famous bazaar remained closed. The ones that remained open had no customers or even local shoppers.