Muslim pilgrims circle the Kaaba at the Grand Mosque in Mecca September 4, 2016. REUTERS/Ahmed Jadallah
Tehran (AFP) - With Iranians blocked from this month's hajj pilgrimage, their supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei issued a furious rebuke Monday to rival Saudi Arabia, saying the Muslim world should challenge its management of Islam's holiest sites.
"Saudi rulers... who have blocked the proud and faithful Iranian pilgrims' path to the Beloved's House, are disgraced and misguided people who think their survival on the throne of oppression is dependent on defending the arrogant powers of the world, on alliances with Zionism and the US," Khamenei said.
He accused Saudi Arabia's ruling family, who are the custodians of Islam's holiest sites in Mecca and Medina, of politicising the annual hajj pilgrimage, due to start at the end of the week, turning themselves into "small and puny Satans who tremble for fear of jeopardising the interests of the Great Satan (the United States)".
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WNU Editor: The Saudi's are not amused by these Iranian accusations .... Saudi Arabia says Iran hit a 'new low' with accusations over hajj stampede deaths (CBC/AP). But in all fairness .... there have been a number of disasters associated with the Haj .... Incidents during the Hajj (Wikipedia), icluding the biggest disaster last year .... 2015 Mina stampede (Wikipedia).
More News On Iranian Demands That Saudi Arabia No Longer Be Responsible For Overseeing Islam's Holy Sites
Iran Urges Muslims to Challenge Saudi Arabia’s Oversight of Holy Sites -- WSJ
Iran accuses Saudi Arabia of killing injured pilgrims -- AP
Iran Rekindles Flap with Saudi Arabia Over 2015 Hajj Stampede -- VOA
Hajj stampede: Iran leader says Saudis 'murdered' pilgrims -- BBC
Imam Khamenei: ‘Disgraced’ Saudi Rulers Should Be Stripped of Hajj Duties -- Al-Manar