Some African nationals have been blamed for the stampede that occurred in the holy city of Mecca which left over 700 people dead and 850 others terribly injured.
This is coming from Saudi Arabia's head of the central Hajj commitee, Prince Khaled al-Faisal, who blamed the crush outside the holy city on "some pilgrims with African nationalities".
The incident took place when two groups of pilgrims arrived at a crossroads on Street 204 at the tent city of Mina for a traditional stone-throwing ritual and the Saudi prince believes that the Africans were more responsible for the incident.
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Corroborating the Prince Khaled's claims, the country’s health minister, Khaled al-Falih, who was quoted yo have said: "many pilgrims move without respecting the timetables [set by authorities, which was the] principal reason for this type of accident. If the pilgrims had followed instructions, this type of accident could have been avoided."
No fewer than 43 Iranian nationals were among the casualties of the stampede which occurred on the first day of the Eid al-Adha festival (24 September), and the country’s officials believe the host country did not give much consideration to the safety of lives.
Said Ohadi, the head of Iran's Hajj organisation, said: “Today's incident shows mismanagement and lack of serious attention to the safety of pilgrims. There is no other explanation. The Saudi officials should be held accountable.”
And the Iranian deputy foreign minister Hossein Amir Abdollahian, revealed that they would summon a Saudi diplomatic envoy over the incident.
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According to him: "We can in no way be indifferent to this irresponsible behaviour of Saudi Arabia. This will be dealt with through diplomatic channels. Saudi Arabian officials are responsible for this incident and they should immediately endeavour to take effective measures for managing the existing crisis and providing full security for pilgrims."
In a related development, a crane collapsed at Mecca’s Grand Mosque, Saudi Arabia, which killed over 87 people and left at least 201 wounded. It was described as a chaotic situation.