Muslim pilgrims begin downsized Haj pilgrimage

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Muslim pilgrims on Wednesday begin the annual Haj, dramatically downsized this year as the Saudi hosts strive to prevent a coronavirus outbreak during the five-day pilgrimage.

The Haj: Muslims have travelled to Mecca for the Haj since the 7th Century

The Haj, one of the five pillars of Islam and a must for able-bodied Muslims at least once in their lifetime, is usually one of the world’s largest religious gatherings. | A view of the Holy Kaaba at the centre of the Grand Mosque in Mecca.