More Than 900 Muslims Die From High Temperatures During Pilgrimage to Mecca

More than 900 Muslim worshippers have died during the annual pilgrimage to Mecca in Saudi Arabia, known as Hajj, due to temperatures that have reached 52 degrees.


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Egypt continues to be the most affected country with at least 325 pilgrims killed, mostly by heat shocks, according to a medical source told a media outlet, although the government of the Arab country has recognized only 28 that belong to its official delegation of more than 50,000 people.

The North African nation recognized that it is too difficult to collect the data of all its nationals since a large number traveled to perform the ritual, which ended last Wednesday, irregularly, referring to that they were not included in the quotas of people marked by Saudi Arabia for each country and traveling on official missions.

In that sense Egyptian Prime Minister, Mostafa Madbuli ordered this Saturday to withdraw the license of 16 agencies that organized “irregular” trips to the ‘Hajj’, the annual pilgrimage to Mecca, in the midst of a crisis in the country after the death of hundreds of compatriots.

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900+ persons died during the annual pilgrimage to Hajj this year.

— The Kashmiriyat (@TheKashmiriyat) June 20, 2024

The faithful who travelled unofficially, for example on tourist visas, did not have access during the pilgrimage to the air-conditioned facilities and tents, so their only shelters were the streets of the holiest city of Islam in the extreme heat.

In the government of Tunisia, which has documented 49 dead, reports that the president of the country, Kais Said, dismissed yesterday, Friday, the minister of Religious Affairs, Ibrahim al Shaibi, shortly after the number of Tunisian faithful died due to extreme heat.

The second most affected country has been Indonesia, with some 200 dead, followed by India, with 98; Malaysia, 34; and Bangladesh, with 31. Morocco has announced at least 20 deaths, while the Iraqi Kurdistan Government has reported 19 deaths during the pilgrimage. Other countries such as Iran, Libya, the Netherlands, the United States or Syria have announced deaths. However, in the vast majority of the communiqués, the causes of death of these faithful are not indicated and the figure could increase over the next few days.

Every year, millions of Muslim gather in the Mecca, main city of the Hiyaz region,5 in present-day Saudi Arabia to perform the Hajj, the sacred Muslim pilgrimage.

The pilgrimage is obligatory to all able-bodied Muslim adult people who can afford it, because have a cost which could ascend to the 5000 dollars.