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Committee of Muslim states must oversee Hajj: S.H.Nasrallah

The secretary general of Lebanese resistance movement Hezbollah says the Saudi regime should allow a joint committee of Muslim countries to oversee the management of annual Hajj pilgrimage.

In an interview with the Lebanese al-Manar TV channel on Friday, Nasrallah heaped scorn on Riyadh for refusing any assistance in handling Hajj affairs, saying the monarchy is fully responsible for the fatal stampede in Mina outside the holy city of Mecca in Saudi Arabia.

Nasrallah further said Saudi Arabia should allow Muslim countries to help the kingdom run the Hajj pilgrimage rituals, emphasizing the need for the formation of a Muslim committee to “supervise the management” of the annual Islamic event.

The Hezbollah leader also said a group of Muslim countries should be formed to probe the fatal stampede during Hajj rites.

We call for the participation of delegates from the countries with the largest number of casualties in the investigation committee in the pilgrimage incident, Nasrallah said.

He made the comments a day after some 2,000 Hajj pilgrims reportedly lost their lives in a stampede that took place near the holy city of Mecca, with hundreds of others injured or missing.

The tragedy happened when a large crowd of pilgrims were on their way to participate in one of the last Hajj rituals.

The disaster has raised questions over the Saudi regime’s ability to manage the large influx of pilgrims into the kingdom during the Hajj pilgrimage season every year.

Saudi officials claim the crush was caused by the victims that refused to follow the instructions of security staff. However, witnesses have rejected the claims, laying the blame on incompetent security personnel as well as a lack of organization at the site.

‘US strategy on Daesh, a failure’

Elsewhere in his comments, Nasrallah described as a failure the so-called anti-Daesh campaign launched by the United States and its allies.

The Hezbollah head added that Washington was after a bargain with Iran over Syria during the nuclear negotiations between Tehran and the P5+1 states, “but this issue is over and they [Iranians] have assured the negotiations were merely nuclear.”

Iran wants Syria to stay part of the anti-Israel resistance axis, said Nasrallah, stressing that the Islamic Republic does not interfere in Syria’s domestic affairs.

Nasrallah also called on Turkey to stop providing support to the terrorist groups operating to topple the Syrian government.

Since late September 2014, the US and some of its Arab allies have been conducting airstrikes against Daesh militants inside Syria without any authorization from Damascus or a UN mandate. The airstrikes in Syria are an extension of the US-led aerial campaign against purported ISIL positions in Iraq, which started in August 2014.

This is while many parties to the same US-led coalition have been among the supporters of Takfiri terror groups wreaking havoc in Syria over the past four years.

About Alireza Mosaddeq

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