At the dawn of the first day of Eid al-Adha – the third day of Hajj – hundreds of thousands of Hajj pilgrims walked together to Jamarat Al-Aqaba in Mina.
It is at this site the pilgrims throw seven pebbles at a wall in a ritual that symbolizes the stoning of the devil.
Security at the site are managing the flow of the more than 2 million pilgrims, to ensure that congestion is kept to a minimum.
It was in 2015 when hundreds of pilgrims died in a stampede at Mina – it was the deadliest incident to occur in the last 25 years of the pilgrimage.
Since then the authorities have taken measures to ensure the safe flow through Jamarat Al-Aqaba and onto the Jamarat Bridge where the ritual takes place.
There are three pillars at the site – only one was open on Sunday – the other two will be opened for the ceremony over the following two days.
Meanwhile, Interior Minister and chairman of the Hajj Supreme Committee Prince Abdul Aziz bin Saud bin Naif inspected the work of Makkah’s Unified Security Operations Center, the Saudi Press Agency reported.
He reviewed the services provided by the center to pilgrims, and stressed the importance of contributing to their security, safety and comfort in line with the aspirations of King Salman and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.
He listened to a briefing from center officials, who explained how issues raised by pilgrims were addressed. They also told him how the center followed up on these reports and evaluated the results of the response.
The minister heard a briefing on the thermal mapping system from
Maj. Gen. Abdurrahman bin Mohammed Al-Saleh, who is head of the National Center for Security Operations at the ministry.
The prince thanked the center’s employees, expressing his appreciation for their efforts in serving pilgrims.[Source: Arab News]