Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has warned Saudi Arabia of a harsh Iranian retaliation if the former shows disrespect for Iranian pilgrims or fails to repatriate the dead bodies of victims of the Mina stampede.
In a speech during the Iranian Naval College’s graduation ceremony in the city of Nowshahr, Khamenei accused Saudi Arabia of not fulfilling its duties following the stampede.
“Saudi Arabia has not fulfilled its duty for the repatriation of the bodies; however, Iran has so far adhered to self-restraint in accordance with Islamic ethics and the [sense of] brotherhood in the Muslim world. But they [Saudi Arabia] should know that they will face a harsh and tough retaliation from Iran in the event that the tens of thousands of Iranian pilgrims, as well as the bodies [of Iranian victims] in Mecca and Medina are subjected to any harm,” Khamenei said.
Iran’s Supreme Leader added that the Saudi authorities made up obstacles to justify the delay in repatriating the bodies. “The Islamic world and our country should conduct investigations into the incident.”
The Saudi Minister of Health Khalid Bin Abdulaziz Al-Faleh announced last Saturday that the number of deaths in the Mina stampede had risen to 769 while 934 people were injured.
A Pakistani official announced on Tuesday that the Saudi authorities distributed pictures of 1,100 people who lost their lives in the disaster to foreign missions in Jeddah in order to determine their identities.