Hajj disaster: let the blame game begin

Hajj disaster: let the blame game begin

Iran has accused Saudi Arabia of serious safety failures after at least 43 of its citizens died in a stampede that killed more than 700 pilgrims today during the annual Hajj pilgrimage.

After saying the kingdom was responsible for the tragedy, Deputy Foreign Minister Hossein Amir Abdollahian said Saudi’s envoy to Tehran would be summoned to the foreign ministry.

The head of Iran’s Hajj organisation, Said Ohadi, said that, for “unknown reasons”, two paths had been closed off near the site of the stoning of the devil ritual where the stampede occurred.
“This caused this tragic incident”.

The names of all Iranians killed in the stampede were read out in a sombre live broadcast in Tehran by a spokesman for the Hajj organisation.

Saudi’s civil defence service has said at least 717 people were killed and 863 hurt. The death toll is expected to rise.

Ohadi said the path closures had left only three routes to the area where the stoning ceremony was held in Mina, about  5km from Mecca.

As well as the dead, at least 60 Iranians were injured, he said, adding:

Today’s incident shows mismanagement and lack of serious attention to the safety of pilgrims. There is no other explanation. The Saudi officials should be held accountable.

Saudi officials were also accused of “tactlessness” over the lack of safety measures at the Hajj. Said Abdollahian:

We can in no way be indifferent to this irresponsible behaviour of Saudi Arabia. This will be dealt with through diplomatic channels.

Saudi Health Minister Khaled al-Falih has blamed undisciplined pilgrims for the tragedy, saying it could have been avoided if they had “followed instructions”, and, according to this report, the head of the Central Hajj Committee, Prince Khaled al-Faisal, blamed the stampede on “some pilgrims from African nationalities”.

This year’s Hajj season was already overshadowed by a crane accident that killed 107 people and wounded more than 200 earlier on September 11, which led to some saying on social media that this was “karma” for 9/11.

In 2006, more than 360 pilgrims were killed in a stampede, also in Mina. The day before the 2006 Hajj began, an eight-story building being used as a hostel near the Grand Mosque in Mecca collapsed, killing at least 73 people.

Two years earlier, a crush at Mina killed 244 and injured hundreds on the final day of the pilgrimage.
And, in 2001, a stampede at Mina killed 35 people.

The worst hajj-related tragedy, which happened in 1990, killed 1,426 pilgrims in a stampede in an overcrowded pedestrian tunnel leading to holy sites in Mecca.

27 responses to “Hajj disaster: let the blame game begin”

  1. more on says:

    If God kill them, then She exists!

  2. Broga says:

    Oh, the irony, the irony.

  3. barriejohn says:

    They were stoning the Devil. It’s “the most dangerous of Hajj rituals”, evidently. We’ll, I’d get pretty pissed off myself if thousands of smelly pilgrims were chucking stones at me every year for no reason, wouldn’t you?

    The Stoning of the Devil ritual re-enacts Abraham’s sacrifice of his son. God told Abraham in a dream to slaughter his only son- Ishmael in Muslim belief – as a sacrifice to God.

    When Abraham talked to Ishmael about this, the dutiful son asked his father to comply immediately.

    When Abraham proceeded to sacrifice his son, the Devil appeared three times to dissuade him from fulfilling his duty – scarifying his son.

    Abraham stoned the Devil with seven stones each time he appeared before him.

  4. barriejohn says:

    Sorry – that appears to be Ishmael; it’s Isaac in the Bible! I’m reminded once again of Soap – “Confused? You won’t be after this week’s episode…”

  5. asquith says:

    Apparently, blacks did it. The Saudi regime said so, so it must be true.

    So much for unity in the ummah!

    Does anyone remember the Hillsborough tragedy? Copper scum said the same then that the “authorities” are saying now.
    Remarkable that we’re being harangued about the need to check our privilege and be ashamed of the fact they don’t exist. What Islanmic regimes do, THAT’S oppression, not being told you’re a fuckwit on Twitter.

  6. Vanity Unfair says:

    My sympathies go to the families of the deceased.
    However, as for the authorities; is all they have learned from repeated failure summed up in a five-storey bier?

  7. Stonyground says:

    All of my life I have tried to have a benign outlook on the world and have concern for the happiness of my fellow man. I have tried very hard to remember that not all Muslims have murderous tendencies and that I should treat people as individuals whatever their religion. I’m afraid that the followers of Islam have ground me down to the point that when I heard this particular piece of news I just laughed. I can no longer stop myself from thinking that the death of these idiots has made the world a slightly better place. The post above from Barriejohn suggests that I may not be wrong.

  8. Broga says:

    @asquith: Must have been the gays. They usually take the fall from everything from multiple deaths to hurricanes.

  9. Marcus says:

    If a finger of blame has to be pointed at anyone then it should be at the more-than-a-million imbeciles who flock to Mecca each year to indulge in infantile shenanigans like throwing rocks at Satan.

    But as far as the Saudi authorities are concerned, this influx represents big bucks. Last year revenues from both Hajj and Umrah, the pilgrimage Muslims make outside the prescribed month, totalled more than $18.6 billion.

  10. MaryD says:

    Ishmael and Isaac are two different ‘only’ sons.

  11. Robster says:

    What the religiously afflicted really, really need is a deity with some sort of warranty or guarantee. The currently worshipped gods are all, without exception, dismal failures. The Christian version is about as useful as a fart in a space suit, the islamic version has once again exampled it’s complete uselessness once again.Work needs to commence immediately on a new god (or new gods to keep both sides happy), this time, let’s whip up a much nicer one than the current models. There is much to do.

  12. Har Davids says:

    Why blame anyone but Allah? If every aspect of our lives is part of his plan, it must have been planned that some people, together with many others, made a trip to some ‘holy’ place to be crushed to death. Praise be!!

  13. So What! says:

    Very fitting for a death cult.

  14. So What! says:

    Why all the fuss? Presumably the dead are now having a wonderful time in paradise with their idol.

  15. So What! says:

    Such shallow faith. I think that alla done it. Those that died were sinners and alla arranged for them all to be in the same place at the same time so as to punish them by all with death. That’s the obvious answer the pious should be reporting.

  16. So What! says:

    Why can’t the pious see that alla is really pissed … First the crane … and now this. Come on all you imams and mufti chaps …you need to identify what it is that alla is pissed off about. If you can’t then he’s gonna do something else to a bunch of you.

  17. So What! says:

    I can save the imams the bother of trying to figure out what alla is pissed off about. I know what it is. Alla’s PR Advisor Angels are worried that kuffar world is getting really hacked off with the Blogger assassinations and that the Hit List needs to be hidden away for a while to let things cool down a bit.

  18. So What! says:

    I have questions … Seriously.

    Q – Is the event attended by all brands of islam? You know … shites, shias, wahabis and whatever other mutation there are. And are all attendees men?

    And I have to agree with Stonyground. Islam is causing so much outrage and retarding civilisation so much that I now look forward to muslim misfortune. I know that’s wrong but hey that’s how they make feel. But I guess that the dead are some poor mothers sons.

  19. 1859 says:

    It was the devil’s revenge for having loads of fucking stones chucked at him – I’d be pissed off too.

  20. Newspaniard says:

    @Stonyground. Don’t tell the other commenters, but I’m with you for the same reasons. It’s good to laugh out loud sometimes, and this is one of them. That’s 700 fewer to arrive at the Hungarian border with their hands out.

  21. Angela_K says:

    I heard this morning that the King of Saudi Arabia was upset about the death of these people; shame he isn’t so concerned about the people he beheads and is about to crucify.

    @Stonyground & Newspaniard, I thought that too.

  22. barriejohn says:

    Sorry, but I didn’t see anything funny about these deaths, only the stupid beliefs of such people. It’s tragic that they can be so comprehensively taken in, and the Saudis make billions of dollars out of it – as if they need it!

  23. barriejohn says:

    Here’s a story that I find equally unfunny: “The Management” in China are praising “Gorgeous George” Osborne for being “the first Western official in recent years who focused on business potential rather than raising a magnifying glass to the ‘human rights issue'”. Well, done Georgie Boy – next stop Riyadh!

  24. AgentCormac says:

    God loves his children, yeah.

  25. Newspaniard says:

    Can the news get better this week?

    Only if they are not insured.