Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif deplored Saudi Arabia for its insufficient cooperation with the Islamic Republic in addressing the problems facing Iranian pilgrims after a recent crush near Mecca which killed hundreds, including 136 Iranians.
“This year, we witnessed two bitter incidents in Hajj (season),” Zarif, who is in New York, said in an interview with the Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting (IRIB) on Saturday.
“It is necessary that the Saudi government take serious decisions about the mismanagement of the executive agents of Hajj (pilgrimage),” he said.
The Iranian top diplomat further criticized Saudi Arabia’s measures in the aftermath of the crush in Mina, saying, “We are not witnessing sufficient cooperation (on the part of Riyadh).
In another development, Zarif sent separate messages to his counterparts in the Muslim countries whose nationals have been killed or injured in Mecca.
Extending condolences to his Muslim counterparts on the deaths, Zarif hoped that the Saudi executive officials would understand the scope of their heavy responsibility for the annual Hajj services.
To handle the Hajj pilgrimage in the best way, Zarif added, Riyadh needs to prepare the ground for consultation and cooperation with the other Muslim nations and use their experiences to avert such tragedies in the future.
The deadly crush has killed pilgrims from Iran, Nigeria, Egypt, Algeria, Burundi, India, Indonesia, Kenya, Morocco, Pakistan, Senegal, Somalia, Tanzania and a number of other countries.