Iran death toll reaches 136 at Mina

Tehran, Sept 26, IRNA – The death toll of the Iranian pilgrims reached 136, Hajj and Pilgrimage Organization announced Saturday.

Based on the latest announcement, the number of the injured Iranian pilgrims increased to 102.

The number of missing Iranian pilgrims has been reduced from 354 to 344, the announcement added.

The pilgrims were on way to jamarāt to perform Hajj rituals there. The Stoning of the Devil is part of the annual Islamic Hajj pilgrimage to the holy city of Mecca.

Muslim pilgrims fling pebbles at three walls (formerly pillars), called jamarāt, in the city of Mina just east of Mecca.

It is one of a series of ritual acts that must be performed in the Hajj.

Based on the latest announcement by Saudi Arabia’s officials, the overall number of wounded pilgrims in the Mina incident stands at 4,000.

Many world experts, political and religious officials believe mismanagement was the real cause for the various incidents in this year’s Hajj pilgrimage, including the fall of a huge crane, a fire disaster in a hotel, a fire which spread in the camp of the Egyptian pilgrims in Mina desert, and above all, the Mina stampede.

Meanwhile, First Vice President Eshaq Jahangiri held the Saudi government responsible for the Thursday stampede tragedy during hajj pilgrimage in Mecca. More than 2,000 pilgrims lost their lives with hundreds still missing.

‘The Mina incident was a very significant issue for us which unveiled Saudi Arabia’s mismanagement,’ he said.

Jahangiri expressed dismay at the two fatal incidents of crane crash and stampede during current hajj rituals and said, ‘The Government of Iran believes that the Saudi government shall be held accountable and will investigate the causes of the tragedy.’

On September 24, Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei declared three days of national mourning following the deaths of several hundred Hajj pilgrims, including Iranians, in the holy city of Mecca.

‘The Saudi government is required to accept its heavy responsibility in this bitter incident and meet its obligations in compliance with the rule of righteousness and fairness. Mismanagement and inadequate measures that were behind this tragedy should not be undermined,” the Leader said.