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Saudi Arabia: Security Forces to Sacrifice in Quest for Pilgrims’ Safety | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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Worshippers circle the Kaaba at the Grand Mosque in Mecca, Saudi Arabia, Thursday, Sept. 8, 2016. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty).

Mina- Saudi Arabia announced that all pilgrims have arrived to the holy capital and will commence the five-day Mashaer journey. Traffic is regulated by authorities to facilitate the journey of pilgrims and security forces will not hesitate to sacrifice for the sake of protecting pilgrims and foiling any attempt to threaten their safety.

Saudi Interior Ministry Spokesman Mansour Al-Turki said during a news conference that Mashaer journey started on Friday in which pilgrims arrived from Makkah to Mashaer. Turki added: “There are more than 11 related plans to manage and organize the pedestrians and crowd movement during the stay of pilgrims in Mashaer.”

The spokesman added that the mission of security forces is to contact relevant authorities when monitoring any unusual crowds. He also said that the security forces are responsible for aiding the physically challenged people and preventing pilgrims from settling in the site.

Colonel Sami al-Shuwairek declared that preparations began at the end of 2015 after which the authorities started to revise plans regarding pilgrims, roads and traffic. The Colonel added: “237,583 violators were ordered to return to their countries. 104,784 vehicles that don’t possess a license to enter Mashaer were also prevented from proceeding. 36 fictitious offices were closed and referred to trial.”

Ministry of Hajj and Umra Spokesperson Hathim Kwathy stated that pilgrims in Makkah reside in up to 4,300 licensed houses and assured that preparations are concluded to host pilgrims in Mashaer.

Also, hospitals and health centers located in Makkah and Mashaer are on alert and prepared for any incident, according to Saudi Ministry of Health Spokesperson Mishaal al-Rabian.

Furthermore, Saudi Red Crescent Authority Spokesperson Bandar Barhim said 133 centers, with 2,530 staffers, were enlisted within this year’s plan; 1,932 of the employees are doctors and specialists in first aid.