More than 100 people have been killed after a crane collapsed at Mecca's Grand mosque less than two weeks before the annual haj pilgrimage. Julie Noce reports.
Rescue and recovery teams continue sifting through rubble after a deadly accident at Mecca's Grand Mosque in Saudi Arabia. At least 107 people were killed and more than 230 injured after construction crane fell onto part of the Grand Mosque just two weeks ahead of Islam's annual haj pilgrimage. The director of Saudi Civil Defence Authority said heavy rains caused the crane to topple over. The mosque is where worshippers circle the Kaaba- the black-clad cube towards which the world's 1.6 billion Muslims face to pray. Officials have gone to great lengths to prepare and secure the area for the throngs of people who converge on Mecca each year. The Emir of Mecca, Prince Khaled Al-Faisal, conveyed his condolences for the victims. The incident is very painful, he said. We hope God accepts the victims and that the injured make a speedy recovery. The haj has been prone to disasters- mainly from stampedes. Hundreds were killed during such an incident in 2006.