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Muslim Hajj Pilgrims Perform Devil-Stoning Ritual

WATCH: Muslims in Azerbaijan celebrate Eid al-Adha, the festival that coincides with the end of the annual hajj pilgrimage. The day is devoted to showing kindness and generosity to others, and is often observed with the sacrifice of a sheep.

Pilgrims performing the annual hajj in Saudi Arabia cast pebbles at three stone walls representing Satan in a symbolic rejection of temptation.

Massive crowds of Muslims filed along a giant ramp that houses the walls in the Mina Valley, pelting them.

Almost 3 million people from around the world were attending the hajj pilgrimage this year.

The stoning ceremony in the past has seen deadly crushes and pileups, though the building of the four-story-tall ramp in recent years has eased access and prevented stampedes.

The first of the three days of stoning also marks the start of the Islamic holiday of Eid al-Adha, meaning "Feast of Sacrifice," when Muslims around the world slaughter sheep and cattle. It is Islam's biggest holiday.

WATCH: In Dushanbe, Tajiks observe Eid al-Adha by offering a meal of lamb to a local orphanage.

compiled from agency reports