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The hajj pilgrimage, one of the largest annual gatherings of people worldwide, starts today. It is one of the Five Pillars of Islam, something which all Muslims must do at least once in their lives, unless they cannot manage physically or financially. 1.3 million pilgrims have arrived in Saudi Arabia for the 2015 hajj, a similar figure to last year.
Even though the numbers making the journey every year are huge, the percentage of Muslims that have attended the hajj around the world is actually quite low, according to Pew Research. A survey in 2013 revealed that a median 9 percent of Muslims had been to Mecca with those closest more likely to have performed the hajj. 20 percent of Egyptian Muslims had been to Mecca compared to just 3 percent of Indonesian Muslims, according to the Pew survey.