Muslims begin Mecca pilgrimage


Mecca - More than two million Muslim pilgrims from around the world yesterday embarked on the first ritual of the annual Haj, which Saudi Arabian officials say was trouble-free. They began their journey at sunrise from the holy city of Mecca to the plain of Mena, seven miles away.

Pilgrims, tracing the steps of Prophet Mohammad, must be in Mena by sundown where they will spend the night in 43,000 tents.