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19 Eygptian pilgrims died in Saudi Arab

20 March, 2016

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RIYADH: At least 19 pilgrims died, all of them Egyptian, and 22 were injured early on Saturday when their bus overturned in western Saudi Arabia, authorities in both countries said.

The tourism ministry in Cairo said 19 Egyptian pilgrims and a child were killed and 15 were injured in the accident. “Nineteen people were killed when the bus carrying them turned over on the Hijra road between the coastal city of Jeddah and the holy city of Madina,” Saudi Red Crescent spokesperson Khaled Ben Messaed al-Sihli said. “All the bus passengers have the same nationality of an Arab country except the driver who is Asian,” he said.

Another 22 people were injured including some who were badly hurt, Sihli added.

Millions of Muslims visit Saudi Arabia each year for the year-round Umrah minor pilgrimage and the annual Hajj pilgrimage. The incident comes days after at least 14 Palestinians were killed and 36 others injured in a bus crash in southern Jordan, local media and medics had reported, citing security officials. The driver of the bus may have lost control, the CDD had said, after which the bus overturned. It added that the passengers were headed to holy city of Makkah to perform the Umra rituals. The injured, whose condition ranged from medium to critical, were transferred to two public hospitals, CDD said.

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