2.4 million pilgrims in final Hajj rituals as world’s Muslims begin Eid celebrations

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Hajj pilgrims perform the Jamrat ritual — symbolic stoning of the devil — in Mina on Tuesday. (AN photo)
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Hajj pilgrims perform the Jamrat ritual — symbolic stoning of the devil — in Mina on Tuesday. (AN photo)
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Hajj pilgrims perform the Jamrat ritual — symbolic stoning of the devil — in Mina on Tuesday. (AN photo)
Updated 22 August 2018
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2.4 million pilgrims in final Hajj rituals as world’s Muslims begin Eid celebrations

  • Saudi authorities say 2.37 million pilgrims, most of them from abroad, have arrived this year for the five-day Hajj
  • As pilgrims returned to Makkah to complete the final Hajj rituals, Muslims throughout the world began celebrating Eid Al-Adha

MAKKAH: More than two million Muslims took part in the symbolic stoning of the devil on Tuesday, the last major ritual of the Hajj pilgrimage that heralded the start of Eid Al-Adha.

Clad in white robes signifying a state of purity, men and women from 165 countries converged on Jamrat to perform the ritual from a three-story bridge.

Large fans sprayed water over the crowd as temperatures climbed to 44C.

Pilgrim Moueeneddine Ahmed, 35, from Bangladesh, complained of the scorching heat but said he was “very excited” to take part in the ceremony.

He also praised the Saudi authorities for maintaining order despite the vast crowd. “There’s a lot of security. Very disciplined,” he said.

In keeping with customs he said he would then “shave his head” and trade the white seamless robe he wore for the Hajj for his “normal clothes.”

 

 

Tens of thousands of security forces, including police and civil defense, have been deployed for Hajj, according to Saudi authorities.

Firas Al-Khashani, 33, a pilgrim from Jordan, was equally impressed. “The police assistance and the services were all extraordinary,” he said. 


“It is a beautiful feeling,” said Hazem Darweesh, 31, from Egypt. “The beauty of it is in the difficulty of performing it. It brings you closer to God.

Saudi authorities say 2.37 million pilgrims, most of them from abroad, have arrived this year for the five-day Hajj.

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King Salman of Saudi Arabia and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman received well-wishers on Tuesday at the Royal Court in Mina Palace.


“Our country’s greatest honor is to serve God’s guests,” the king said. “On Eid Al-Adha, I ask God to complete the pilgrims’ Hajj and to perpetuate goodness and peace for our nation and all other countries.”


As pilgrims returned to Makkah to complete the final Hajj rituals, Muslims throughout the world began celebrating Eid Al-Adha — the “feast of sacrifice” commemorating the willingness of the Prophet Ibrahim to sacrifice his son on God’s command.

Palestinians visited the Haram Al-Sharif in Jerusalem’s Old City after morning prayers.

The festival was also celebrated across Africa and Asia. Thousands prayed in a field in the Kenyan capital, Nairobi, in the Somali capital Mogadishu, and at Almaty central mosque in Kazakhstan.


Saudi crown prince meets families of servicemen killed in line of duty

Updated 14 November 2018
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Saudi crown prince meets families of servicemen killed in line of duty

  • The prince welcomed the guests and passed on the greetings and appreciation of King Salman to all the families of all those killed

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, the first deputy prime minister and minister of defense, has met the families of members of the armed and security forces killed in the line of duty.
At the start of the reception, at the Royal Court on Nov. 13, the prince welcomed the guests and passed on the greetings and appreciation of King Salman to all the families of all those killed and the ruler’s pride in their sacrifices in defense of their religion and homeland. Prince Mohammed said many other families of fallen officers were not present at the gathering but that efforts would be made to meet them all, and that all families of fallen and wounded servicemen are cherished.
“We have assigned departments concerned with the families of the martyrs of the duty, wherever they are, to fulfill their requirements and to communicate with them, and we are in fact” one united family, the crown prince said.
He added that he was pleased to meet the families, and asked God to welcome those who had died, heal the injured, bless the efforts of the armed forces and security forces, and guide them to victory and success.
The families expressed happiness at meeting the crown prince and asked him to convey their greetings and appreciation to King Salman. Prince Mohammed was joined at the reception by other members of the royal family and officials.