Muslims attend Eid al-Fitr prayer ceremony at a mosque in Xi'an, northwest China's Shaanxi Province, July 17, 2015. (Xinhua/Liu Xiao) (yl/lfj)

Algerian President Abdelmadjid Tebboune Monday announced that his country “is reviewing the possibility to reopen mosques for the public,” the official APS news agency reported.

The president made the remarks during a meeting of the High Security Council attended by top military and security officials as well as cabinet members to assess the COVID-19 epidemic inside the country. Tebboune instructed Prime Minister Abdelaziz Djerad to program a gradual reopening of mosques.

He added that the first phase of the program will be limited to 1,000 large mosques in the country, which “will be able to allow the essential physical distancing with the imperative wearing of masks by all.”

The prime minister was authorized to estimate the reopening of beaches and other places for recreation and relaxation.

Mosques, beaches and parks in the country have been closed since mid-March, as part of measures taken by the authorities to stem the spread of the COVID-19 epidemic.

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