Pilgrims killed in Mecca: Egypt imposes sanctions on travel agencies for “fraud”

Pilgrims killed in Mecca: Egypt imposes sanctions on travel agencies for “fraud”

Today, Saturday, the Egyptian authorities ordered the cancellation of the licenses of 16 tourism companies and the referral of their managers to the prosecution on charges of “fraud,” after they illegally transported pilgrims to Mecca in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

The premier Egyptian minister, Moustafa Madbouli, “a retiree of the licenses of these enterprises, who has responsibilities for the public and the minister, who is responsible for profiting from family members’ morts from the cause of death,” said in a statement in his cabinet. statement.

This decision comes after the death of hundreds of pilgrims during the great Hajj season that was held in Saudi Arabia in light of the extreme heat, and more than half of them did not have permits for this annual gathering.

A tally prepared by Agence France-Presse on Friday, based on official data and information provided by diplomats, estimates the death toll at more than 1,100 people, more than half of whom are from Egypt.

Every year, tens of thousands of believers try to participate in the Hajj without obtaining the necessary permits, paid and granted according to quotas, which in particular provide access to air-conditioned facilities.

On Friday, a senior Saudi official defended the Kingdom’s handling of the Hajj season, which officially ended on Wednesday.

“The state did not fail, but there was an error in judgment on the part of people who did not measure the risks incurred,” this official told AFP.

He added that this happened against the backdrop of difficult weather conditions and extremely harsh temperatures.

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In early June, Saudi Arabia announced that its forces had returned more than 300,000 unregistered pilgrims from Mecca, including 153,998 foreigners who had entered the kingdom on tourist visas, without going through official channels.

However, it appears that a large number of unauthorized pilgrims were able to participate in the rituals that took place over several days, in particularly difficult circumstances.

Hajj is one of the five pillars of Islam and every Muslim who is able to perform Hajj must perform it at least once in his life.

Permits to participate in Hajj are allocated to countries according to a quota system.

Even for those who can afford it, higher costs make the off-road route — which costs thousands of dollars less — more attractive.

“We can estimate the number of unregistered pilgrims at about 400,000,” the Saudi official said on Friday.

“Most of them are of the same nationality,” the official added, likely referring to Egypt. Arab diplomats told AFP earlier this week that Egypt had recorded 658 deaths, including 630 unregistered pilgrims.

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About the Author: Hermínio Guimarães

"Introvertido premiado. Viciado em mídia social sutilmente charmoso. Praticante de zumbis. Aficionado por música irritantemente humilde."

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