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Published:January 3rd, 2008 14:39 EST

700 Russian hajj pilgrims stuck in Turkey's Trabzon

By SOP newswire

Over 700 Russian hajj pilgrims stuck in Turkey's Trabzon have been delivered home, with another 59 Russians still waiting for a ferry, Russia's Consul General in Trabzon said on Wednesday.

A large group of Russian pilgrims on their way home from a hajj in Mecca in Saudi Arabia had to stop in the Turkish Black Sea port of Trabzon over the suspension of ferry service due to poor weather conditions.

Diplomat Alexander Tolstopyatenko said 741 Russian tourists and over 30 vehicles had already been transported home.

"Another group of pilgrims on board two buses and three microbuses arrived in Trabzon at 10:00 a.m. today - 59 people, in total," he said adding that the hajj pilgrims could be ferried to Sochi, a Russian Black Sea resort, later in the day.

The Ekho Moskvy radio earlier quoted pilgrims as saying that a Chechen resident died of a heart attack in Trabzon on December 30. Two people have been hospitalized and several dozens have caught a cold, the radio said.

Russia's chief doctor Gennady Onishchenko confirmed the death of a Russian hajj pilgrim earlier on Wednesday.