Tehran, Iran, Sept. 25
Mehdi Sepahvand -- Trend:
A high-ranking delegation from Iranian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Red Crescent of Iran are set to depart for Saudi Arabia to investigate the situation of a stampede disaster that caused the death of more than 750 Hajj pilgrims.
The delegation is to be led by Deputy Foreign Minister for Consular Affairs Hassan Qashqavi, IRNA news agency reported Sept. 25.
The diplomat said he is off to Saudi Arabia to precipitate in the investigations and first of all acquire knowledge of the Iranians who have gone missing following the incident.
Another objective is to arrange for the transfer of the bodies of Iranians who have died in the stampede, he pointed out.
Latest reports say of the total 750 people who died of the incident, 131 have been identified as Iranians.
The crush occurred Sept. 24 during the Hajj outside the holy city in Saudi Arabia when the pilgrims were performing the symbolic stoning of the devil by throwing stones at three pillars. This year over two million pilgrims are performing the Hajj.
A total of 61,000 Iranian pilgrims are in Saudi Arabia for Hajj rituals.
This year pilgrims have been undeterred by the collapse of a construction crane in Mecca earlier this month, which killed more than 100 people and injured at least 200.
Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei declared three days of national mourning following the catastrophe.
Ayatollah Khamenei also called the Saudi government to assume responsibility for the incident.
Edited by CN