Pilgrims from China's largest Hui community leave for Mecca

0 CommentsPrint E-mail Xinhua, November 1, 2009
Adjust font size:

The first chartered flight from northwest China's Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region to Mecca took off on Saturday afternoon, marking a start of pilgrims' annual journey from China's largest Hui community this year.

A total of 2,250 people from Ningxia were scheduled to go for the hajj this year. They will go to Mecca by seven chartered planes from Yinchuan, Ningxia's capital.

According to Li Yushan, an official with the regional religious bureau of Ningxia, 71 personnel, including doctors and interpreters, were going with the pilgrims to help them in the foreign country.

Fourteen imams, or senior and revered Muslims, would help resolve religious questions of the pilgrims, he added.

Average cost of each pilgrim was 30,000 yuan (about 4,412 US dollars), he said.

More and more Muslims in China have the chance to go to Mecca now, according to the official, noting that in 1988, only 15 pilgrims made the journey.

"Among the pilgrims, the proportion of farmers is also increasing," said Ma Shouyu, head of the religion bureau of Haiyuan county.

"This year among the 174 pilgrims from our county, three quarters are farmers," he said.

Ningxia is dubbed as China's "Muslim province", where more than one third of the population, or 2.1 million, are from Hui ethnic minority.

From Oct. 30 to Nov. 18, about 12,700 Muslims will go to the holy city for hajj in 41 chartered flights from Xinjiang, Gansu, Ningxia, Yunnan and Beijing.

The first batch from Xinjiang and Gansu left on Friday.

Print E-mail Bookmark and Share


No comments.

Add your comments...

  • Your Name Required
  • Your Comment
  • Comments are moderated and generally will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive.
Send your storiesGet more from China.org.cnMobileRSSNewsletter