Saudi-Iran tensions run high over Hajj tragedy

Saudi-Iran tensions run high over Hajj tragedy
12:23 29 Sentyabr 2015
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[ 29 September 2015 13:16 ]

The director of Iran’s Cultural Central in Azerbaijan: “The deaths might number above 5,000”

Baku. Malahat Najafova – APA. “Unfortunately, reports have emerged of Saudi Arabia planning to carry out mass burial of those killed in the incident in Mina. This is not right,” Ibrahim Ibrahimi, chairman of the Cultural Center at Iran's Embassy in Azerbaijan, has said, APA reported. 


He said that Iran will not allow its pilgrims to be buried there. 


“We want investigations to continue to search for the causes of the incident. We want Iranian investigators to be given a visa so that they can investigate the incident themselves,” Ibrahimi stressed. 


The center’s director said the announced casualty numbers are not true. According to him, as many as 4,700 people have been killed. 


“2,000 to 3,000 bodies are yet to be examined. Regrettably, 228 Iranians have died, 247 others are missing, and 28 more are in hospital. The casualty number may exceed 5,000. The countries of the dead have the right to take part in the investigation. 


The bodies of the dead should be handed over to their countries and the causes of the incident should be analyzed and investigated. Hajj pilgrimage organizers bear great responsibility. We suggest that the countries whose citizens participate in Hajj pilgrimage, should also participate in the arrangement of the pilgrimage. A Joint Council would be better to be established so that no pilgrim gets hurt. Mina is empty throughout the year. Measures should be taken for the one-week pilgrimage. All will be uncomfortable if such a case will continue next year. It is the first time that nearly 5,000 pilgrims died due to negligence. This is a tragedy not only for Iran but for the whole Islamic world. 


Ibrahim Ibrahimi mentioned that his country mainly demands it to be allowed to assist the injured, the unrecognized bodies’ being investigated and handed over to Iran and the other 14 countries. He added that Iranian Embassy in Azerbaijan will open Memory Book tomorrow in the morning. 

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