UAE revises face mask rule for outdoor activities

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It's no longer mandatory to wear face masks when stepping out in the UAE.

That's according to the latest guidelines issued by the National Emergency Crisis and Disasters Management Authority (NCEMA), which said the decision to wear a face mask will be "optional".

However, the face-mask rule will continue to be implemented in "public indoor spaces".

The new protocol will come into play on February 26.

The authority also unveiled the easing of a host of COVID restrictions on Friday.

Physical distancing rules for the "economic and tourist sectors" have been scrapped and all sporting activities for all age groups can resume.

The Al Hosn Green Pass or a negative PCR test result with a 96-hour validity a must to attend all local events, exhibitions, and cultural and social activities.


The authority added that mandatory quarantine for COVID close contacts have been removed. However, close contacts working in state departments will have to undergo daily PCR tests for five days.

NCEMA added that the isolation protocol for those who test positive for COVID will remain unchanged but the use of electronic wristbands will be removed.

The authority added that "each emirate has the flexibility to determine the duration of the quarantine period and PCR tests for COVID contacts".

NCEMA also approved the return of the pre-pandemic time intervals between prayer calls and the iqaamah, in addition to the return of Noble Qur’an books to mosques in a limited number on the condition of being sterilised after each prayer.

The current one-metre distance between worshipers in mosques and places of worship will remain unchanged.

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