Brunei pilgrims safe from fire in Mekah

National 1 minute, 11 seconds

BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN

ALL Bruneian Haj pilgrims are safe from the fire that broke out on Thursday at an 11-storey hotel in Mekah, an official said yesterday.

Hj Abdul Rahman Matzin, Acting Director of the Haj Management Department, Ministry of Religious Affairs, told The Brunei Times that the Haj pilgrims from Brunei were safe from the Aziziya neighbourhood’s blaze.

“Their accommodations are far away from where the fire incident took place,” said Hj Abdul Rahman who gathered information from haj officers who are currently serving in Saudi Arabia.

Upon hearing of the fire incident in the news, haj officers in charge there were immediately contacted.

“We are constantly in touch with Brunei’s haj officers who serve in Saudi Arabia,” he said.

Media reported that the blaze started on the eighth floor of the hotel.

The incident follows a crane collapse in Mekah last week, killing at least 111 people and injuring more than 390.

The annual pilgrimage is expected to start on Monday.

A total of 400 pilgrims departed Brunei for Haj in two batches on August 30 and 31.

The pilgrims are expected to return to Brunei on September 29 and 30.

The Saudi Arabia government imposed a quota of 1,000 pilgrims per million inhabitants for each country due to the ongoing upgrades of mosques Masjidil Haram in Mekah and Masjid Nabawi in Madinah. This means Brunei, which has a population of around 400,000 people, has been granted a quota of 400.

The Brunei Times