WARNING: DISTURBING FOOTAGE— DAILY SABAH (@DailySabah) June 9, 2018
Man commits suicide inside the Grand Mosque of Mecca housing the Kaaba, Islam's holiest site, by jumping from the third floor pic.twitter.com/wzIdJ8jdL3
A man committed suicide only meters away from the Kaaba inside the Grand Mosque of Mecca, Islam's holiest site, by jumping from the third floor to the surface, where thousands of pilgrims were performing the tawaaf.
The incident occurred late Friday and was captured on footage by others inside the Masjid al-Haram complex housing the Kaaba, the building Muslims face while performing their prayers. The man is seen jumping from over the security fence amid cries.
Several Saudi news outlets reported that the man, who died immediately after hitting the ground, was a 26-year-old French citizen who converted to Islam, which regards suicide as a major sin.
"A foreigner threw himself from the roof of the Grand Mosque in Mecca" to the courtyard below, "resulting in his instant death", Saudi police told the official SPA news agency later in the day. A French foreign ministry official told AFP in Paris that the dead man was French but gave no further details.
The body was transported to hospital, with an investigation underway "to determine the victim's identity, what led to the act and how he was able to commit it despite the existence of a metal fence", SPA said.
Previously in Feb. 2017, a man tried to kill himself inside the complex and was prevented from setting himself on fire with gasoline.
Every year, millions of Muslim pilgrims from across the world travel to Mecca and Medina, Islam's second holiest site, also in western Saudi Arabia.