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Asia Insight

Coronavirus closes mosques, churches and temples across Asia

Devout turn to livestreaming as social distancing rules tighten

SHOTARO TANI and ISMI DAMAYANTI, Nikkei staff writers | South Asia

JAKARTA -- Every Friday, Adrian Putra would go early to worship at the crowded Istiqlal Mosque in central Jakarta to get himself a place inside and avoid praying in the baking noontime heat.

But he hasn't been for two weeks because the expansive white domed sanctuary, Southeast Asia's largest mosque, has canceled Friday prayers that are mandatory for Muslim men. This is to prevent close contact between people as the new coronavirus rips through the world's fourth-most populous nation.

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