Hajj 2023: More than 580,000 pilgrims arrive in Saudi Arabia

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Authorities have registered a total of 585,932 pilgrims who have travelled from across the globe to Saudi Arabia so far ahead of this year’s Hajj, the official news agency SPA reported on Thursday.

Statistics on arriving and departing pilgrims in Medina, issued by the Hajj and Visit Committee, showed that 28,531 pilgrims arrived on Wednesday, while the number of pilgrims who departed on the same day to holy sites in Mecca amounted to 471,051 pilgrims.

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The number of pilgrims who remained in Medina until Wednesday amounted to 114,830 pilgrims.

Hajj, the annual pilgrimage to the holy city of Mecca in Saudi Arabia, is expected to begin on June 26 – pending an official announcement by authorities. This year’s pilgrimage will see about 2.6 million Muslims come together to perform the Islamic ritual for the first time since COVID-19.

Earlier this June, Saudi Arabia unveiled the largest ever Hajj operation plan ahead of the pilgrimage season as restrictions on the number of pilgrims were lifted.

A record-breaking 14,000 staff members and more than 8,000 volunteers will be deployed on the ground to help the millions of Muslims who are expected to partake in Hajj.

Authorities have also prepared more than 170 hospitals and health centres at holy sites in Mecca and Medina to serve Hajj pilgrims this year.

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