Iran: Saudi Arabia’s Cooperation on Mina Crush “Not Enough”

Iran: Saudi Arabia’s Cooperation on Mina Crush “Not Enough”

TEHRAN (Tasnim) – Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister for Arab and African Affairs described as insufficient the collaboration of Riyadh with Tehran in pursuing the fate of missing Iranian pilgrims, and called for the Arab state’s serious cooperation in this regard.

Hossein Amir Abdollahian told the Tasnim News Agency on Monday that he has made a phone call and talked with the Saudi envoy in Tehran over the recent crush in Mina, Saudi Arabia, which led to the deaths of over 2000 pilgrims, including at least 169 Iranians.

Despite their promise of cooperation in certain areas, Saudi Arabia’s measures for pursuing the fate of missing Iranian pilgrims are not enough, the Iranian official said, referring to near 300 Iranian nationals who are still unaccounted for.

He said Iran expects Saudi Arabia’s interior and Hajj ministries to immediately provide consular access for identifying the bodies of Iranian victims that are still in the containers transferred to Mecca.

Amir Abdollahian further noted that Saudi officials are expected to consider serious and effective cooperation and pay attention to their responsibility until the fate of all missing Iranian pilgrims is determined.

Iran will continue pursuing the issue seriously as long as all its missing pilgrims are accounted for, Amir Abdollahian underlined, expressing Tehran’s readiness to help accelerate the process.

“The Saudi chargé d'affaires explained the latest measures taken by Saudi Arabia, and promised to inform his country’s senior officials of the issue immediately,” Amir Abdollahian said about his phone call with the Saudi envoy.

About 2000 pilgrims died in the Thursday crush in Mina, outside Mecca, when performing religious rites. With the death toll rising, many pilgrims are still unaccounted for in the incident that marked the worst Hajj disaster in 25 years.

So far, 169 Iranian pilgrims have been pronounced dead and nearly 300 others remain missing.

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