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By Omar Akour The Associated Press

Over 2 million Muslims begin annual hajj pilgrimage

MECCA, Saudi Arabia — More than 2 million Muslims began the annual hajj pilgrimage at first light on Sunday in Saudi Arabia, circling the cube-shaped Kaaba in Mecca that Islam’s faithful face five times each day during their prayers.

The five-day hajj pilgrimage represents one of the world’s biggest gatherings every year, and is required of all able-bodied Muslims once in their life.