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At Least 550 Pilgrims Died During Hajj, 144 from Indonesia

19 June 2024 11:19 WIB

TEMPO.CO, JakartaSaudi Arabia's Ministry of Foreign Affairs confirmed that hundreds of visitors have died during the annual Hajj pilgrimage to Mecca amid scorching heat. At least 550 Hajj pilgrims have died while performing the fifth pillar of Islam.

Two sources said that of the 550 dead pilgrims, 323 were Egyptian citizens. Most of them died due to heat-related illness. Reuters, however, could not confirm the figure.

Stampedes, tent fires, and other accidents have caused hundreds of deaths during the Hajj to Saudi Arabia in the past 30 years. This year's pilgrimage began on Friday, June 14.

Saudi state TV said temperatures rose as high as 51.8 degrees Celsius (125.2 Fahrenheit) in the shade at the Grand Mosque in Mecca on Monday.

A 2024 study by the Journal of Travel and Medicine found that rising global temperatures may outpace strategies to deal with the heat. A 2019 study by Geophysical Research Letters said that as temperatures rise in arid Saudi Arabia due to climate change, pilgrims performing haj will face "extreme danger".

Thirty-five Tunisian citizens have died during the Hajj, Tunisian news agency Tunis Afrique Presse said on Tuesday.

Many of those deaths were due to extreme heat, family members said on social media, as other families continued to search for missing relatives in Saudi hospitals.

The Jordanian foreign ministry said it had issued 41 burial permits for Jordanian pilgrims on Tuesday. Earlier, the ministry said at least six Jordanian citizens died of heat stroke during the Hajj.

Eleven Iranians have died and 24 were hospitalized during the pilgrimage, Iranian state news outlet IRINN said on Tuesday without giving the causes of death.

Three Senegalese citizens also died during Hajj, Agence de Presse Sénégalaise, said on Monday.

As for Indonesia, the Health Ministry reported that 144 pilgrims died based on data as of Tuesday, June 18. The data did not specify if any of the deaths were due to heat stroke.

REUTERS

Editor's Choice: Soaring Temperatures Scorch Pilgrims on Hajj in Saudi Arabia

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