The Saudi interior ministry has extended the deadline to allow foreign and Saudi nationals into the Makkah perimeters to perform the Haj pilgrimage, Gulf News has reported. The decision to move the deadline to next Tuesday was taken following reports by Saudi passport authorities that applications for Haj were still reaching their offices, the ministry said. Saudi officials said that 1,603,073 foreigners arrived for Haj by Saturday evening. "The overwhelming majority of 1,479,070 arrived by air, while 106,619 came on land and 17,384 by sea," officials said. The figure indicates a decrease of 52,790 would-be pilgrims compared with the same date in 2011. The officials did not explain the reasons behind the 3% drop.