DUBAI: The death toll from a crush of pilgrims on Thursday during the annual Muslim hajj in Saudi Arabia has risen to 717, the Saudi civil defense said.

It said that 805 other people had been injured in the crush caused by large numbers of people pushing at Mina, outside the Muslim holy city of Makkah. The stampede occurred at Mina's street number 204. Rescue operations are under way and an emergency has been declared in all nearby hospitals. 

Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif also expressed grief and sorrow over the loss of lives in the tragic incident. The Hajj had been largely incident-free for the past nine years as a result of a series of safety improvements.

Earlier, a massive construction crane had crashed into Makkah’s Grand Mosque in stormy weather, killing at least 108 people. 

Furthermore, Foreign Ministry of Pakistan has issued the helpline number for information. The number is 00966125277537.

Pakistan's DG Hajj has said that as things stand, it cannot be confirmed whethere or not there are any Pakistani citizens yet among the dead. He added that he is in constant touch with Saudi authorities.