Pilgrims head to Saudi Arabia’s Mina to ‘stone the devil’ in one of final Hajj rites

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Hajj pilgrims will make way back to Saudi Arabia’s Mina on Saturday to perform several duties, one of which is the symbolic ‘stoning of the devil’ ritual.

The pilgrims will head to Mina and the Grand Mosque to perform the final Hajj rites and rituals on the third day of their pilgrimage, which is also the first day of Eid al-Adha.

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The stoning of the devil ritual includes stoning three pillars which symbolize the devil and the sins.

On the first day of Eid al-Adha, pilgrims throw small pebbles or stones, which they gathered the night before in Muzdalifah, at the “Great Aqaba” column.

Pilgrims will be walking in crowds through a multi-level structure housing three pillars symbolizing the devil.

The ritual is an emulation of Prophet Ibrahim’s stoning of the devil at the three spots where he is said to have appeared trying to dissuade him from obeying God’s order to sacrifice his son, Ismael.

Hajj is considered the world’s largest religious gathering, with about 2.5 million people performing the ritual in 2019.

However, due to COVID-19, the Kingdom had sharply decreased the number of pilgrims allowed to perform the ritual.

This year, the Kingdom allowed one million pilgrims from inside and outside the country to participate.

Saudi authorities have fully equipped 93 healthcare centers across the holy sites in Mecca to provide pilgrims participating in the annual Hajj pilgrimage with quick and direct health services, Al Arabiya reported on Thursday.

On Friday, the official Saudi Press Agency (SPA) reported that the number of beneficiaries of the health services provided in all health facilities in the holy sites exceeded 65,000, including 108 cardiac catheterization operations, 313 dialysis sessions, 177 surgeries and 10 endoscopic operations. A further 1831 pilgrims benefited from the services of the virtual hospital.

Meanwhile, 23 people have been caught violating the rules and regulations of Hajj by transporting people unauthorized to perform the annual ritual and will be fined, SPA reported.

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