Skip to main content International
The Web      Powered by

Hajj death toll rises to 251

Pilgrims perform a symbolic stoning of the devil.

Story Tools

more video VIDEO
Muslims were trampled to death during the annual pilgrimage to Mecca.
premium content

MECCA, Saudi Arabia -- The death toll in a weekend stampede at the site of a Muslim ritual has risen from 244 to 251, the Saudi minister of information said Monday.

Six fatalities had been taken Sunday to King Faisal Hospital and were not counted in the original toll, and one of the seven worshipers who were critically injured died Monday, he said.

Of the 244 people injured, 32 remained hospitalized Monday at Mina General Hospital outside Mecca, the minister said.

Sunday morning's stampede occurred at a stone-throwing ritual that has been the source of deadly tramplings in the past.

The incident happened around 9 a.m. (0600 a.m. GMT) during the annual hajj pilgrimage. The health minister said the stampede lasted for about 27 minutes before the crowd was brought under control. The stoning ritual has since resumed.

The pilgrims traveled from the Muslim holy city of Mecca to Mina to cast pebbles at three columns of stone that symbolize the devil.

An estimated 2 million pilgrims are attending this year's Hajj.

Last year, 36 pilgrims were trampled to death, most of them en route to the devil stoning ritual.

In 2001, a stampede at the same ritual killed 35.

Muslims across the globe make the annual hajj pilgrimage to Saudi Arabia, where they worship at Islam's holiest sites. The five-day journey -- which every adult Muslim must take at least once if possible -- began Jan. 31.

The most deadly hajj-related incident was a 1990 stampede in which 1,426 pilgrims were killed.

Here is a breakdown of other violent incidents at the annual Muslim pilgrimage:

1998 -- 180 people died in a stampede near Mecca at the end of the hajj;

1997 -- a fire in Mina tore through the sprawling, overcrowded tent city, trapping and killing more than 340 pilgrims and injuring 1,500;

1994 -- a stampede kills 270 pilgrims;

1991 -- a chartered airliner carrying pilgrims home to Nigeria crashed, killing 261;

1991 -- a plane crash in northern Saudi Arabia killed 91 Senegalese soldiers returning from a trip to Mecca which had been a reward for their service in the U.S.-led coalition that drove Iraqi forces from Kuwait in the Gulf War a month earlier;

1989 -- bombs exploded near the Grand Mosque in Mecca, killing one pilgrim and wounding 16 others;

1987 -- some 400 people, mainly Iranian Shiite pilgrims, were killed in clashes with Saudi security forces during anti-Western protests in Mecca.

-- CNN Correspondent Rym Brahimi, Producers Ayman Mohyeldin and Adil Bradlow contributed to this report

Story Tools
Click Here to try 4 Free Trial Issues of Time! cover
Top Stories
Iran poll to go to run-off
Top Stories
EU 'crisis' after summit failure

On CNN TV E-mail Services CNN Mobile CNN AvantGo CNNtext Ad info Preferences
   The Web     
Powered by
© 2005 Cable News Network LP, LLLP.
A Time Warner Company. All Rights Reserved.
Terms under which this service is provided to you.
Read our privacy guidelines. Contact us.
external link
All external sites will open in a new browser. does not endorse external sites.
 Premium content icon Denotes premium content.