Over 2,400 pilgrims killed in Saudi hajj stampede: AP

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates - The September stampede during the hajj in Saudi Arabia killed at least 2,411 pilgrims, a new Associated Press count shows, three times the number of deaths acknowledged by the kingdom three months later.

See Full Article

The AP figures establish the Sept. 24 crush at Mina as the deadliest in the history of the annual pilgrimage. It occurred just weeks after a fatal crane collapse in Mecca.

Saudi Arabia rebuffed criticism from its regional Shiite rival Iran and efforts by other countries to join a probe into the deaths. And while King Salman ordered an investigation into the tragedy almost immediately, few details have been made public since.

The AP count is based on state media reports and officials' comments from 36 of the over 180 countries that sent citizens to the hajj. Hundreds of pilgrims remain missing. The official Saudi toll of 769 people killed has not changed since Sept. 26, and officials there have yet to address the discrepancy.

The state-run Saudi Press Agency has not mentioned the investigation into the disaster since Oct. 19, when it reported that Crown Prince Mohammed bin Nayef, who is also the kingdom's interior minister, was "reassured on the progress of the investigations." The crown prince is the next in line to the throne and any blame cast on the Interior Ministry, which oversees safety during the hajj, could reflect negatively on him.

The ruling Al Saud family maintains its major influence in the Muslim world through its oil wealth and its management of Islam's holiest sites. Like Saudi monarchs before him, King Salman has taken the title of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques.

Authorities have said the Mina crush and stampede occurred when two waves of pilgrims converged on a narrow road, suffocating or trampling to death those caught in the disaster. Saudi Arabia has spent billions of dollars on crowd control and safety measures for those attending the annual five-day pilgrimage, required of all able-bodied Muslims once in their life, but the sheer number of participants makes ensuring their safety difficult.

The hajj this year drew some 2 million pilgrims, though in recent years it has drawn more than 3 million without any major incidents.

Iran was most affected by the disaster, according to the AP count, with 464 Iranian pilgrims killed. Mali said it lost 305 people, while Nigeria lost 274 and 190 pilgrims from Egypt were killed.

Others include Bangladesh with 137 pilgrims killed; Indonesia with 129; India with 120; Cameroon with 103; Pakistan with 102; Niger with 92; Senegal with 61; Ethiopia with 53; Ivory Coast with 52; Benin with 50; Algeria with 46; Chad with 43; Morocco with 42; Sudan with 30; Tanzania with 25; Burkina Faso with 22; Kenya with 12; Somalia with 10; Ghana, Tunisia and Turkey each with seven; Libya and Myanmar with six apiece; China with four; Afghanistan, Djibouti, the Gambia and Jordan with two each; and Lebanon, Malaysia, the Philippines and Sri Lanka each with one.

The second deadliest incident at hajj was a 1990 stampede that killed 1,426 people. The Sept. 11 crane collapse at Mecca's Grand Mosque, which preceded the Mina disaster, killed 111 people.

-----

Associated Press writer Baba Ahmed in Dakar, Senegal, contributed to this report.



Advertisements

Latest Canada & World News

  • Trudeau milking the middle class [Video]

    Canada News Toronto Sun
    Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s most-repeated boast has now been exposed as a lie. Despite his Zen-like mantra of dedicating his political life to bettering the lives of Canada’s middle class, a come-hither line bought by a gushing electorate in the 2015 election, the truth now has him milking the middle class as if it were a cash cow. Source
  • Palestinian gunman kills 3 Israeli guards at West Bank settlement, Israeli police say

    World News CBC News
    A Palestinian man with security clearance to work at a Jewish settlement in the occupied West Bank opened fire at a checkpoint on Tuesday, killing two Israeli security guards and a paramilitary policeman. The man, who was armed with a pistol and also seriously wounded a fourth Israeli, was shot dead, police said. Source
  • Doomsayer David Meade now claims Oct. 15 will be 'the most important date of this century or millennium'

    World News Toronto Sun
    The man whose biblical doomsday claim had people worried about Sept. 23, 2017, is not backing down. The world did not end over the weekend, and David Meade, a self-described "specialist in research and investigations," is saying that's exactly what he had expected. Source
  • Myanmar accused of crimes against humanity

    World News CBC News
    Myanmar is committing crimes against humanity in its campaign against Muslim insurgents in Rakhine state, Human Rights Watch said on Tuesday, and it called for the UN Security Council to impose sanctions and an arms embargo. Source
  • Fears of Bali volcano eruption sparks leads to exodus of 75,000

    World News CTV News
    BALI, Indonesia - Warnings that a volcano on the Indonesian tourist island of Bali will erupt have sparked an exodus of more than 75,000 people that is likely to continue to swell, the country's disaster agency said Tuesday. Source
  • Fears of Bali volcano eruption spark exodus of 75,000

    World News CTV News
    BALI, Indonesia -- Warnings that a volcano on the Indonesian tourist island of Bali will erupt have sparked an exodus of more than 75,000 people that is likely to continue to swell, the country's disaster agency said Tuesday. Source
  • North Korea lacks ability to attack U.S. planes, experts claim

    World News CTV News
    SEOUL, Korea, Republic Of - Military analysts say North Korea doesn't have the capability or intent to attack U.S. bombers and fighter jets, despite the country's top diplomat saying it has the right do so. Source
  • North Korea lacks ability, intent to attack U.S. planes, experts claim

    World News CTV News
    SEOUL, Korea, Republic Of -- Military analysts say North Korea doesn't have either the capability or the intent to attack U.S. bombers and fighter jets, despite the country's top diplomat saying it has every right do so. Source
  • North Korea appears to bolster defences after flight by U.S. bombers

    World News CBC News
    North Korea appears to have boosted defences on its east coast, South Korea's Yonhap news agency said on Tuesday, after the North said U.S. President Donald Trump had declared war and that it would shoot down U.S. Source
  • Puerto Rico faces water, food shortages after Hurricane Maria

    World News CTV News
    SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico - Supermarkets are gradually re-opening in hurricane-ravaged Puerto Rico. But many customers are going home disappointed as the island struggles to get back to normal. Most food stores and restaurants remain closed. Source