Hajj Heat: Death Toll Rises to 900+

 On Wednesday, loved ones and acquaintances of missing hajj pilgrims desperately searched for information as the death toll from the sweltering annual rituals exceeded 900. 

Hospitals were combed through and social media was inundated with pleas for updates, particularly after the scorching temperatures in Mecca reached record highs. The pilgrimage, with 1.8 million participants this year, was held outdoors during the intense Saudi summer, leading to a surge in deaths among the elderly and infirm. 

Egyptian officials reported a significant increase in fatalities, with over 600 confirmed dead and 1,400 missing pilgrims. Among the disappeared is Mabrouka bint Salem Shushana, an elderly Tunisian woman who was unable to access cooling facilities due to being unregistered.

 Family and friends turned to online platforms in hopes of locating their loved ones, such as Ghada Mahmoud Ahmed Dawood, whose whereabouts remained unknown since Saturday. Despite the distressing circumstances, there were glimmers of hope as some individuals remained unaccounted for among the deceased, fueling optimism for their safe return.

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