Iran’s Hajj and Pilgrimage Organization announced that the conditions for participation of Iranians in this year’s Hajj pilgrimage have been fulfilled following negotiations with Saudi officials after a hiatus in the wake of a diplomatic row with the kingdom.
In a statement released on Friday evening, the Hajj and Pilgrimage Organization said the necessary conditions for the dispatch of more than 85,000 Iranian pilgrims to this year’s Hajj have been met.
Following negotiations with Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Hajj and Umrah, the Iranian officials have been assured that the country’s pilgrims will be able to make a pilgrimage to Mecca with security and dignity, and will be offered appropriate consular and medical services, the statement added.
Iran’s authorities had held several rounds of talks with Saudi officials on the Hajj pilgrimage.
More than 1.8 million faithful took part in the 2016 Hajj, but Iranians stayed at home after tensions between Riyadh and Tehran boiled over following a deadly crush of people during the 2015 pilgrimage.
On September 2, 2015, thousands of people lost their lives in a deadly crush after Saudi authorities blocked a road in Mina during a ritual, forcing large crowds of pilgrims to collide.
The crush was the deadliest incident in the history of the pilgrimage. According to an Associated Press count based on official statements from the 36 countries that lost citizens in the disaster, more than 2,400 pilgrims were killed in the incident.
Saudi Arabia claims nearly 770 people were killed in the incident, but officials at Iran’s Hajj and Pilgrimage Organization say about 4,700 people, including over 460 Iranian pilgrims, lost their lives.