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More than 1,000 pilgrims evacuated during Saudi hotel fire

MECCA: More than 1,000 pilgrims in Saudi Arabia were safely evacuated from a hotel in Mecca after a fire broke out on Thursday ahead of the hajj, emergency officials said.

Authorities said the blaze started on the eighth floor of an 11-story hotel in Mecca’s Aziziya neighborhood.

Saudi civil defense officials said two pilgrims were being treated for injuries from the fire.

The hajj is expected to start on Monday.

More than 1 million pilgrims have already arrived for the annual pilgrimage, which all able-bodied Muslims are required to perform once in their lives.

The fire comes after a crane collapse in Mecca last Friday killed at least 111 people and injured more than 390. –AP


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