News ID: 126763
Published: 0616 GMT September 12, 2015
At least 107 pilgrims dead in Mecca crane collapse

President: Islamic Ummah saddened by Mecca deadly incident

President: Islamic Ummah saddened by Mecca deadly incident

President Hassan Rouhani in a message on Saturday extended condolences to the families of victims of a deadly crane collapse in Saudi city of Mecca and wished speedy recovery for those injured in the incident.

President Rouhani said the Friday incident that claimed lives of at least 107 pilgrims and wounded 238 people has brought grief upon the Islamic world, IRNA reported.

One Iranian pilgrim lost his life and more than 32 others suffered injuries in the crane collapse.

President Rouhani said the incident has also distressed him, voicing Iran's willingness to deliver medical services to those affected by the disaster in Mecca.

Saudi Arabia said on Saturday that stormy winds knocked over the crane which collapsed onto one of Islam's holiest shrines in Mecca, Reuters reported.

"Heavy rain and strong winds of unusually high speed led to the uprooting of trees, the fall of panels and the collapse of the crane," General Suleiman al-Amr, director general of the Civil Defense Authority, told Saudi-owned Al-Arabiya TV on Saturday.

The number of deaths may increase, Al-Amr said. Many of the people injured in the accident were only lightly wounded, he said.

Mecca's governor, Prince Khaled al-Faisal, has ordered an investigation into the incident.

Much of the city center is undergoing construction work and many high cranes crowd the skyline. The Grand Mosque itself is undergoing an expansion and renovation.

The disaster was the latest in a series of deadly mishaps to hit the Hajj, one of the world's largest religious gatherings, after hundreds of pilgrims died in a stampede in 2006.

Authorities have broadened access paths and imposed limits on the millions of Muslims who converge on Mecca to perform the annual rite in an attempt to reduce accidents.

Mecca is currently preparing for the annual Muslim Hajj pilgrimage.

Hundreds of thousands of people are expected to arrive in the Saudi city from all over the world later this month.






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