Iran leader threatens ‘fierce’ reaction if Saudi does not return Hajj dead

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TEHRAN: Iran’s supreme leader Ayatollah Syed Ali Khamenei threatened a “fierce” reaction on Wednesday if Saudi Arabia does not quickly repatriate victims of last week’s Hajj stampede.

“Saudi officials are failing to do their duties,” Syed Khamenei said following delays in the return of more than 200 Iranian bodies. “If Iran wants to react… our response will be fierce.”
Ayatollah Khamenei was speaking to graduating navy officers in the city of Noshahr in northern Mazandaran Province on Wednesday.
Iranian supreme leader also called on Muslim countries to investigate the deadly crush last Thursday that killed hundreds of pilgrims, including at least 239 Iranians.

“Representatives from Iran and the Islamic world should go to Saudi Arabia and investigate the cause of the Hajj incident,” Ayatollah Khamenei was quoted as saying by Fars news agency.
“Saudi Arabia failed to fulfill its duties concerning the desperate wounded [pilgrims],” he said.
Ayatollah Khamenei noted, “Saudi authorities do not discharge their responsibilities and in some cases act contrarily (contrary to their duties) and slyly.”
“Our nation is grief-stricken; the Hajj should be a place of security; is it [called] security when the lives of people are jeopardized during the [Hajj] rituals?”the Iranian leader asked.
Head of Iran’s Hajj and Pilgrimage Organization Saeed Ohadi has announced that 239 Iranian pilgrims have so far been confirmed dead. Twenty-seven Iranian pilgrims have been wounded and 241 others remain unaccounted  for, that includes Iran’s former ambassador in Lebanon.

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