Ayatollah Ali Khamenei

Iranian leaders criticize Saudi Arabia over last year's deadly hajj crush and stampede

Iranian leaders criticize Saudi Arabia over last year's deadly hajj crush and stampede

For Muslims, the five pillars of Islam, professing the Muslim faith, prayer, paying alms, fasting and the pilgrimage to the holy city of Mecca in Saudi Arabia are the central religious obligations they must all fulfill.

Whereas the first four can be done on one’s own, the pilgrimage, or hajj, is a communal rite, a journey drawing millions of Muslims of all stripes and nationalities together. 

But the annual pilgrimage, which starts this week, has been used as a weapon of sorts in recent days in the often-bitter rivalry between Saudi Arabia and Iran.

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said Wednesday that Muslims...

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