Saudi Health Ministry Raises Hajj Stampede Death Toll to 769Dana Khraiche
The death toll from a stampede near Saudi Arabia’s holy city of Mecca during the Hajj pilgrimage has climbed to 769, Saudi Health Minister Khaled al-Falih said Saturday.
In a news conference broadcast by Saudi-owned al-Arabiya television, Falih said another 934 were wounded in Thursday’s incident, the worst tragedy at Hajj in a quarter century.
Falih said an investigation has been opened into the fatal stampede and that results would be made public.
The stampede was the second deadly incident surrounding the Hajj this month, after a crane collapsed at the Grand Mosque, Islam’s holiest site, killing more than 100 people and injuring over 200 others. The twin disasters have come despite the kingdom spending billions of dollars on expanding and securing its religious sites.