Muslim Pilgrims Begin Hajj Pilgrimage

Saudi Arabia has dispatched more security personnel and health workers for this year’s annual hajj pilgrimage to Mecca – 85,000 security and civil defense officers and 18 aircraft and Black Hawk helicopters have been deployed, reports Agence France Presse. This security expansion is largely in response to the alarming spread of the Islamic State on the attack in Iraq and Syria and threatening other borders. Thus far, security forces have turned away more than 145,000 unauthorized pilgrims, notes the official Saudi Press Agency as reported by AFP. Thousands of health workers are also monitoring the hajj for both Ebola, an infectious disease in West Africa, and Middle East Respiratory Syndrome, another infectious disease spreading across the Arabian Peninsula. To prevent the spread of deadly Ebola, no pilgrims from Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone are allowed entry to this year’s hajj. Saudi Arabia faces many challenges in in accommodating and protecting thousands of pilgrims - a consequence of the intersection of a 1400-year-old institution with modern and globalized threats to security and health. – YaleGlobal

Muslim Pilgrims Begin Hajj Pilgrimage

Ebola, MERS, and Islamic State extremism are top concerns for the Saudi government during hajj in Mecca
Wednesday, October 8, 2014
© AFP 2014

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