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Extreme heat leaves 577 Hajj pilgrims dead in Saudi Arab

19 June, 2024 20:36

At least 577 Hajj pilgrims died in Saudi Arab due to extreme heat as temperature sored over 50 degrees Celsius, according to data obtained from al-Ma’aisem Hospital on the outskirts of Makkah.

The number was also confirmed by AFP.

At least 323 of those who died were Egyptians, most of them succumbing to heat-related illnesses, two Arab diplomats coordinating their countries’ responses told AFP.

Meanwhile, Pakistan’s Ministry of Religious Affairs has confirmed that nine Pakistanis have passed away during Hajj this year.

Apart from that, 60 Jordanians also died, the diplomats said, up from an official tally of 41 given earlier on Tuesday by Amman.

The new deaths bring the total reported so far by multiple countries to 577.

Last year, at least 240 pilgrims, most of them Indonesians, were reported to have died during the hajj.

According to Saudi officials, about 1.8 million pilgrims performed hajj this year, of which 1.6 million are from foreign countries.

The pilgrimage is increasingly affected by climate change, according to a Saudi study published last month that said temperatures in the area where rituals are performed were rising 0.4 degrees Celsius (0.72 degrees Fahrenheit) each decade.

Temperatures hit 51.8 degrees Celsius (125 Fahrenheit) at the Grand Mosque in Mecca on Monday, the Saudi national meteorology centre said.

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