Sunday, July 21, 2024
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Heatwave caused over 500 death of hajj pilgrims

A severe heatwave struck the annual Hajj pilgrimage in Mecca, Saudi Arabia, leading to the tragic deaths of 550 pilgrims. The Hajj pilgrimage, one of the largest annual gatherings in the world, attracts millions of Muslims from across the globe.

At least 550 pilgrims died from extreme heat during this year’s Hajj, with temperatures reaching 51.8 degrees Celsius (125 Fahrenheit) at Mecca’s Grand Mosque. Egyptians accounted for the highest casualties, totaling 323 deaths, primarily from heat-related illnesses. Saudi officials treated over 2,000 pilgrims for heat stress. The pilgrimage is increasingly impacted by climate change, as temperatures rise by 0.4 degrees Celsius per decade in ritual areas.

The highest casualties were egyptians with 323 succumbing primarily to heat- related illnesses. According to a diplomat, “All of them (the Egyptians) died because of heat,” except for one who was fatally injured in a minor crowd crush.

Saudi advisories urging pilgrims to use umbrellas, stay hydrated but many hajj necessitate long outdoor exposure.

Other countries such as Indonesia Malaysia Iran Senegal are also reported deaths during this year’s hajj.

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