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First Hajj Stampede Victims Arrive Back In Iran


The first plane carrying bodies of Iranian pilgrims killed in the hajj stampede in Saudi Arabia has arrived in Tehran, nine days after the disaster that further soured already poor relations between the two regional rivals.

President Hassan Rohani and other senior officials were at the airport on October 3 for the arrival of the plane, which carried 104 bodies.

State TV said another flight was due later in the day.

Saudi authorities say 769 pilgrims died in the stampede near Mecca in the worst disaster to strike the annual pilgrimage in a quarter-century.

Iran appears to have lost the largest number of pilgrims, with 464 dead.

Iran has blamed Saudi "mismanagement" for the stampede.

Based on reporting by AFP and AP
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