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Saudi Arabia Accused of Negligence as Death Toll in Haj Suprasses over 1000 Due to Extreme Temperatures

The death toll from this year’s muslim annual pilgrimage, Hajj, has soared to over 1000 with more than half being unregistered worshippers, compelled to complete the pilgrimage against scorching temperatures in Saudi Arabia, in the wake of accusations against the Kingdom for negligence. 

Tens of thousands of pilgrims embark towards Hajj via unofficial methods, since they are unable to afford the rather expensive legal visas, which allegedly barred them from utilizing the air-conditioned areas for the 1.8 million authorized pilgrims. According to various reports, the majority of those who died were Egyptian.

Many took to social media to condemn Saudi Arabia’s negligence in the wake of soaring temperatures, accusing the kingdom for not taking enough measures to protect the pilgrims from the heat.

“Hundreds of Egyptian pilgrims died when throwing stones at ‘Jamarat’ [the ritual stoning of a representation of the devil during the Hajj], and the Saudi government is keeping the disaster a secret. Eyewitnesses say that they saw the bodies of pilgrims dumped in the streets amid the complete absence of medical and ambulance teams,” one social media user wrote.

“Pilgrims are not dying from overcrowding but rather from poor organization and negligence. There have been hundreds of deaths of pilgrims of different nationalities,” another stated.

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