Saudi Arabia: Unauthorized Hajj Pilgrims Die from Heat Stress after Walking in Scorching Heat 

The authorities exerted great efforts to raise awareness about heat stress and emphasize the need to follow preventive measures. (SPA)
The authorities exerted great efforts to raise awareness about heat stress and emphasize the need to follow preventive measures. (SPA)
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Saudi Arabia: Unauthorized Hajj Pilgrims Die from Heat Stress after Walking in Scorching Heat 

The authorities exerted great efforts to raise awareness about heat stress and emphasize the need to follow preventive measures. (SPA)
The authorities exerted great efforts to raise awareness about heat stress and emphasize the need to follow preventive measures. (SPA)

Saudi Arabia stressed on Sunday that it treated several cases of heat stress during this year’s Hajj pilgrimage. Some pilgrims are still receiving care.

A total of 1,301 fatalities from heat stress were reported, with 83 percent of the cases being among pilgrims without permits, announced Minister of Health Fahd Al-Jalajel in televised remarks.

The unauthorized pilgrims walked long distances under the scorching sun, without shelter or comfort, and many among them were elderly and suffering from chronic illnesses, he explained.

Over 1.8 million pilgrims performed the Hajj with complete ease and safety, amid an integrated advanced system of services, he added.

Al-Jalajel highlighted the strenuous efforts carried out by the concerned authorities to ensure that the pilgrims, regardless of their race or nationality, have a smooth journey, which led to the success of the pilgrimage in spite the massive numbers that were present and the various challenges posed by the souring temperatures.

The authorities exerted great efforts to raise awareness about heat stress and emphasize the need to follow preventive measures, he went on to say.

All relatives of the deceased have been contacted and the deceased have been identified – a process which took some time because they did not carry the necessary identification, the minister remarked. They have been buried in the holy city of Makkah and their death certificates have been issued.

Moreover, Al-Jalajel said no diseases or epidemics were reported at the Hajj. The health system provided over 465,000 specialized treatment services, including 141,000 to individuals who did not obtain official authorization to perform the Hajj, he revealed, stressing that the leadership prioritizes human health above all else.

The services offered included open-heart surgeries, cardiac catheterization, dialysis, and emergency care.



Mohamed bin Zayed, Burhan Discuss Means to End Sudan War

United Arab Emirates President Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan and Sudan's army chief Abdel Fattah al-Burhan meet in Abu Dhabi on March 11, 2022. (AFP)
United Arab Emirates President Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan and Sudan's army chief Abdel Fattah al-Burhan meet in Abu Dhabi on March 11, 2022. (AFP)
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Mohamed bin Zayed, Burhan Discuss Means to End Sudan War

United Arab Emirates President Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan and Sudan's army chief Abdel Fattah al-Burhan meet in Abu Dhabi on March 11, 2022. (AFP)
United Arab Emirates President Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan and Sudan's army chief Abdel Fattah al-Burhan meet in Abu Dhabi on March 11, 2022. (AFP)

United Arab Emirates President Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan and Sudan's army chief Abdel Fattah al-Burhan held telephone talks on Thursday to discuss a proposal by Ethiopia to end the war in Sudan, said diplomatic sources.

This was the first telephone call between the two leaders since the Sudanese army openly criticized the UAE for its alleged support of the rival Rapid Support Forces (RSF), a claim repeatedly denied by Abu Dhabi.

During the call, Sheikh Mohamed "affirmed the UAE's keenness to support all solutions and initiatives aimed at halting escalation and ending the crisis in Sudan in a way that contributes to enhancing its stability and security and fulfilling the aspirations of its people", reported the UAE’s state news agency (WAM).

He stressed the importance of peaceful dialogue and prioritizing reason to preserve security and stability in Sudan.

Sudanese diplomatic sources said the leaders discussed a proposal by Ethiopia’s Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed to end the war that erupted in April 2023.

The PM had visited Sudan earlier this month to mediate ending the conflict, which broke out over disputes over the transition to civilian rule.

Speculation was rife in Sudan over the telephone call between Sheikh Mohamed and Burhan.

Aide to Burhan, Yasser al-Atta, accused the leaderships of the UAE and Chad of supporting the RSF militarily during the war.

He added however that the telephone call was a positive step that may boost the chances of ending the war.

In June, Sudan filed an official complaint to the United Nations Security Council accusing the UAE of supplying the RSF with weapons. The UAE denied the claim.

A leading member of the Forces of Freedom and Change said the telephone talks between Sheikh Mohamed and Burhan did not come as a surprise.

Speaking on condition of anonymity, he added that Ahmed’s visit to Port Sudan earlier this month "took place in complete coordination with regional and international powers to persuade the leaders of the Sudanese army to choose peaceful solution" to end the conflict.

"We are fully aware that there is a movement within the army that is influenced by the Islamist movement that is impeding any effort to end the war so that it could return to power once again," he went on to say.

Moreover, he remarked that all efforts to end the fighting in Sudan, whether on the African or Arab levels, are taking place in complete coordination with the efforts carried out by the European Union and United States.