Saudi Arabia’s civil defence service said at least 700 people were killed in the stampede, which broke out as people moved to and from a site where they throw stones at three pillars which symbolise the devil, a ritual known as Jamarat.
At least 863 people were also hurt, the service said.
“The secretary-general was deeply saddened to learn of the death of more than 700 Hajj pilgrims and of injuries to many others as a result of a deadly incident in the Mina Valley in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia,” a spokesman for Mr Ban said.
“This tragic incident is all the more distressing as it took place on the first day of the Holy Eid al-Adha marking the end of the annual Hajj season.”
Pope Francis used his first public remarks since arriving in New York to express solidarity with Muslims after the stampede.
“I want to express the closeness of the church in the face of the tragedy people suffered in Mecca,” he said.
A spokesperson for the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade said the Australian embassy in Riyadh was in contact with Saudi authorities and no Australians were known to have been affected by the stampede at this stage.
https://www.endtime.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/06/6803824-3x2-340x227.jpg 227 340 alphatimes https://endtime.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/06/endtime-logo.png alphatimes2015-09-25 00:00:002018-03-28 16:43:18Hajj pilgrimage: UN’s Ban Ki-moon ‘deeply saddened’ by stampede deaths of more than 700