More than 700 people were crushed to death Thursday near Mecca, Saudi Arabia, in a stampede.
More than 800 others were injured. The victims were part of the Muslim Hajj pilgrimage, which began Tuesday.
Saudi officials say the stampede happened in Mina, about five kilometers from Mecca. Hajj pilgrims go to Mina to throw rocks at three stone walls that represent evil. It is the final part of the Hajj ritual before the yearly Eid al-Adha religious observance. The pilgrims also spend the night at Mina. The area has more than 160,000 tents for the visitors.
The Saudi Arabian civil defense department reported the number of dead and injured on the social media website Twitter.
There have been several deadly stampedes at the Hajj during the past 25 years. Huge numbers of people gather for the five-day-long event. This year, 2 million pilgrims are taking part. All Muslims are required to go on the Hajj at least once, if they are able.
Last year, Saudi Arabia reduced the number of pilgrims because of concerns about safety.
The worst Hajj stampede happened 25 years ago inside a tunnel in Mina. More than 1,400 people were killed. Stampedes in three other years -- 1994, 2004 and 2006 -- each killed more than 200 people.
Earlier this month, a construction crane collapsed during Friday prayers at the Grand Mosque in Mecca. Workers had been expanding the mosque. More than 100 people were killed and more than 200 others injured. Officials said high winds during a rainstorm caused the crane to collapse. The machine had reportedly been operating at the construction project for three or four years.
The Grand Mosque is Islam's holiest site. It is among the largest religious centers in the world and has millions of visitors every year.
I'm Christopher Jones-Cruise.
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1.This year, 2 million pilgrims are taking part.
They all dressed up to take part in the New Year's party.
2.Last year, Saudi Arabia reduced the number of pilgrims because of concerns about safety.
The man was known to the police because of previous convictions.
沙特官员表示，踩踏事故发生在距离麦加大约5千米的米纳。朝圣者们前往米纳向代表恶魔的三面石墙扔石头 。这是朝圣活动的最后一步，随后就是一年一度的宗教节日古尔邦节 。朝圣者也会在米纳度过夜晚 。该地区为游客们准备了超过16万顶帐篷 。
过去25年麦加朝圣期间曾发生过几起致命踩踏事故。许多人参加这个为期五天的活动 。今年共有200万名朝圣者参加 。所有穆斯林如果有能力的话一生至少都要参加一次麦加朝圣 。
最严重的朝圣踩踏事故发生在25年前米纳一个隧道内。超过1400人遇难 。另外三起踩踏事故分别发生在1994年，2004年和2006年，各自造成200多人死亡 。
本月初，一辆工程起重机在大清真寺周五的祈祷过程中坍塌。当时工人们正在扩建清真寺 。超过100人死亡，另有200多人受伤 。官员们表示，造成起重机坍塌的原因是狂风暴雨 。据报道，这辆起重机已经在这个工程施工三四年的时间 。