The Saudi government allegedly beheaded the 28 people found responsible for the deadly stampede during the hajj pilgrimage in September.
Lebanese media outlet Beirut Daily al-Diyar reported a Saudi official announced the beheadings “due to failure to control the pilgrimage.” The King allegedly said these 28 people “did not follow the instructions,” which is “a great disservice to Saui Arabia.”
“This religious decree will be issued immediately in Mina tomorrow; they will be charged with violating security issues and disobeying orders which claimed the lives of more than 1000 pilgrims and brought disrepute for Saudi authorities,” stated the report.
Some feel Saudi Arabia is only trying to save face by using “criminals who are already imprisoned.” If they are non-criminals, activists believe the men did not receive a proper trial since the report was released only 12 hours after the stampede.
“No one should be punished without enough evidence and court ruling and the right to defend themselves,” declared Muhammad Zakery, the CEO of the FreeMuslim association. “Human life has no value in Saudi Arabia.”
At least 769 people died on September 24. Iranian officials said 464 of their citizens were among the dead. It occurred in Mina, which is near Mecca, when “two large groups of pilgrims converged at right angles on the way to taking part in one of the Hajj’s major rites at the Jamarat pillars.”
Iranian regime President Hassan Rouhani used part of his time at the UN General Assembly to attack Saudi authorities. He claimed the victims “fell victim to the incompetence and mismanagement of those in charge.”
“Public opinion demands that Saudi Arabian officials promptly fulfill their international obligations and grant immediate consular access for the expeditious identification and return of the cherished bodies and remained,” he continued.
Iranian dictator Ali Khamenei also attacked at Saudi Arabia.
“The issue will not be forgotten and the nations will pursue it seriously,” he said. “Instead of accusing this and that, the Saudis should accept responsibility and apologize to the Muslims and victims’ families.”
This is not the first time a deadly stampede transpired during Hajj. A stampede on July 2, 1990, killed 1,426 pilgrims in an “overcrowded pedestrian tunnel leading to holy sites in Mecca.” The majority killed traveled from Malaysia, Indonesia, and Pakistan. On January 12, 2006, at least 346 pilgrims died “when pilgrims tripped over luggage that had been dropped amid the crowds of people rushing to carry out the devil-stoning ritual.” That happened only days after 76 pilgrims died “when a hostel in Mecca collapsed in a narrow street.”