107 killed in crane collapse at Mecca’s Grand Mosque

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Pilgrims finish the pre-dawn prayer in an overflow area outside Masjid al-Haram on Monday, November 23, 2009.

MECCA — A crane collapsed Friday at one of Islam’s most important mosques — Mecca’s Masjid al-Haram, or Grand Mosque — killing at least 107 people and injuring 238 others, Saudi Arabia’s civil defense authorities said Friday on Twitter.

There was no immediate comment about the cause of the collapse.

The Masjid al-Haram surrounds Islam’s holiest site, the Kaaba — a shrine that worshipers visit during the Hajj, the annual pilgrimage to Mecca. Approximately 2 million people a year make the pilgrimage, which this year is due to begin around September 21 .

Images aired on Saudi state television have shown the crane’s metal boom smashed through what appeared to be the roof of the mosque.

Google Map for coordinates 21.389082 by 39.857912.

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