Saudi Arabia raises death toll during Mecca pilgrimage to 1,301

Most deaths will be related to chronic diseases that have been aggravated by extreme heat

Saudi Arabia confirmed this on Sunday 1,301 people die during annual pilgrimage to Mecca.Most, as the health minister said and reported by state media, were not registered.

“Unfortunately, the death toll rose to 1,301, 83% of whom did not have permission to perform Hajj. They had travelled long distances in the scorching sun, without adequate shelter or rest,” the minister said.

The Egyptian government announced the deaths of 31 pilgrims due to chronic diseases during this year’s Hajj but did not give the total number. However, a government official reported the deaths of at least 630 more people who had traveled to Saudi Arabia on visit visas, most of whom were registered at the emergency compound in Mecca’s Al-Muaisim neighborhood. An Egyptian diplomat confirmed that number and said most of the dead were buried in Saudi Arabia. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to brief the media.

The government said this in its statement 16 travel agencies did not provide adequate services to pilgrimsS. He said these agencies facilitated the illegal arrival of travellers to Saudi Arabia by granting them visas that did not authorise them to reach Mecca. The government said those responsible for the companies had been reported to the prosecutor’s office for investigation.

According to Associated Press figures, the dead included 165 pilgrims from Indonesia, 98 from India and dozens from Jordan, Tunisia, Morocco, Algeria and Malaysia. Two American pilgrims are also reported dead.

AP could not independently confirm the causes of the deaths. However, some countries such as Jordan and Tunisia have blamed it on extreme heat. Associated Press journalists witnessed Pilgrims fainting due to scorching heat During the Hajj, especially on the second and third day, some vomited and collapsed.

Deaths are not uncommon for the hajj, which sometimes brings two million people together in Saudi Arabia for the five-day ritual. There have been deadly stampedes and epidemics in the past. However, this year’s death toll was far higher than usual, indicating extraordinary circumstances.

More than 2,400 pilgrims died in a stampede in Mina during the 2015 hajj, the deadliest incident on the pilgrimage, according to AP data. Saudi Arabia has never acknowledged the total number of deaths. In another incident that same year, a crane collapsed at the Grand Mosque in Mecca, killing 111 people.

The second-deadliest incident at the Hajj was a stampede that killed 1,426 people in 1990.

According to the Saudi National Meteorological Center, during this year’s celebrations, daily temperatures in Mecca and at sacred sites around the city ranged between 46 and 49 degrees. Some people fainted when they tried to participate in the symbolic stoning of the devil.

Hajj is one of the five pillars of Islam The world’s largest religious group. According to Saudi Hajj officials, more than 1.83 million Muslims will perform the Hajj in 2024, including more than 1.6 million from 22 countries and about 222,000 Saudi citizens and residents.

Saudi Arabia has invested billions of dollars in crowd control and security measures for those making the annual five-day pilgrimage, but the sheer number of participants makes it difficult to ensure their safety.

Climate change could further increase the risk. A 2019 study by experts at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology concluded that even if the world manages to mitigate the worst effects of climate change, the Hajj will be observed in temperatures above the “extreme risk threshold” from 2047 to 2052 and until 2079. Until 2086.

Islam uses the lunar calendar, so the Hajj is celebrated about 11 days earlier each year. Until 2029, the Hajj will take place in April and the years after that will be in winter, when temperatures are lower.

(TagstoTranslate)International(T)Saudi Arabia(T)Islam

Source link

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button