700 pilgrims killed in worst Haj tragedy in 25 years

Sept 25, 2015 (LBO) – More than 700 pilgrims have died in a crush outside the Muslim holy city of Mecca, with a further 800 people injured, media reports said.

This is the worst disaster in 25 years to occur during the holy pilgrimage. The Saudi King Salman has said he has ordered a review of haj plans after the disaster.

About two weeks ago, a crane operated by the Saudi Binladin Group collapsed killing more than 100 people. The company said the accident was caused by strong winds.

The disaster could pose a political challenge to the king with the kingdom troubled by plunging oil prices and war.

Thursday’s disaster is the worst since July 1990 when 1,426 pilgrims died after a similar disaster suffocating in a tunnel near Mecca.