Bus Crash in Saudi Arabia Leaves 22 Hajj Pilgrims Dead

Two buses collided near Saudi Arabia's border with the United Arab Emirates on Friday, killing 22 people leaving the kingdom after participating in this year's Islamic hajj pilgrimage, the state news agency said.

The dead and the 24 injured in the accident included pilgrims from Egypt, Syria, Pakistan and Kyrgyzstan, the Saudi Press Agency said. It did not elaborate on how many were killed or injured from each country.

The accident occurred early Friday, when the two buses collided head on, 4 miles from the al-Bathaa border crossing with the Emirates in eastern Saudi Arabia, the agency said.

The victims were rushed to hospitals in the nearby cities of Ahsa and Hufouf, the head of the provincial branch of the Red Crescent, Saoud Mohammed al-Dosari, told the agency. The report did not give details on the cause of the accident.

The five-day hajj pilgrimage ended on Jan. 2, but many piligrims remain in Saudi Arabia for days afterward for tourism or business. Around 3 million pilgrims participated in this year's hajj.

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