Wed, 30 Apr 2003

Saudi Arabia blacklists haj operators

JAKARTA: The Saudi Arabian government has added 15 minor haj operators to 198 haj operators from Indonesia which have already been blacklisted, an official said.

Minister of Religious Affairs Said Agil Husin Al Munawar said on Tuesday the Indonesian government had also revoked the operational license of 12 haj operators for committing gross violations during this year's haj season.

Said Agil said the operators had committed serious offenses, including forging haj passports.

Of the violators, four of them will have their licenses revoked.

"If they want to resume their operations, they have to be able to show a letter from the Saudi Arabian Haj Ministry declaring that the latter has pardoned them," he added.

Nine operators received a first warning for bringing the haj pilgrims late to Madinah. -- Antara