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‘6 missing Afghan pilgrims might be among dead’

‘6 missing Afghan pilgrims might be among dead’

Sep 27, 2015 - 18:53

KABUL (Pajhwok): At least 22 Afghan pilgrims have been killed in incidents that took place during Haj rituals, while the missing six more Afghanis might also be among dead, the Ministry of Hajj and Religious Affairs said on Sunday.

Faiz Mohammad Mukhtar, the head of the Hajj affairs department, said some 42 Afghans were wounded in the crane incident out which 10 had been discharged from the hospital.

Earlier, 107 worshippers were killed and 238 wounded when a crane collapsed in the Masjid al-Haram in holy city of Makkah, the Saudi Civil Defence Authority tweeted. The civil defence chief, Suleiman bin Abdullah al Amr, and his team rushed to the scene.

The cause of the accident was not immediately known, but images from the scene showed part of a huge red crane crashing through the roof of the world’s largest mosque.

In a stampede, that took place in Mina last Thursday some 717 pilgrims were killed and 863 wounded.

Saudi Arabia's health minister blamed undisciplined pilgrims for the deadly stampede Thursday during the Haj, saying the tragedy would not have occurred if they “had followed instructions”.

According to media reports rescue operations are under way and an emergency has been declared in all nearby hospitals. At least 4,000 emergency personnel and 220 ambulances are taking part in the rescue operations, the service said.

In addition, six Afghan nationals have been missing after a horrible crash at Mina, outside the Muslim holy city of Makkah, where around two million people are performing the holy ritual, the Afghan authorities had said.