By Gavin Gibbon
Saudi's Interior Ministry has announced new fines for violating social distancing regulations and attending gathering
Saudi Arabia has tripled the number of daily coronavirus tests in the kingdom, according to Health Minister Tawfiq Al-Rabiah.
Al-Rabiah revealed that the ministry was testing between 5,000 to 6,000 people each day around a month ago, but this has been ramped up to between 16,000 to 18,000 daily.
The total number of polymerase chain reaction tests conducted so far is 586,405.
He said: “This will allow us to discover as many cases as possible to save lives before it’s too late. “We’ve taken this step out of our trust in our health care soldiers, who make the country’s health system strong.”
Meanwhile, the Interior Ministry has announced new fines for violating social distancing regulations and attending gatherings.
First-time violators will pay SR10,000 ($2,666). Those who facilitate illegal gatherings, attendees and the people sending invites will pay SR5,000. These fines will double when violations occur for a second time.
If the facility where the gathering took place belongs to the private sector, it will be closed for three months, and six months if the offense is repeated.
Expats violating these regulations will be permanently expelled from the country after serving or paying the penalty imposed.
Ministry spokesman Dr. Mohammed Al-Abd Al-Aly said: “Our mass testing, as well as field investigation and monitoring, show us that social gatherings continue to contribute to the increase in infection cases.”