— -- As Pope Francis spoke at St. Patrick's Cathedral in New York this evening, he offers prayers for the hundreds of Muslim pilgrims killed today during Hajj.
"I would like to express two sentiments for my Muslim brothers and sisters," he said.
"My sentiments of closeness in the face of tragedy. Tragedy that they suffered in Mecca," Francis said.
More than 700 people were crushed and trampled to death today in a stampede on the outskirts of the holy city of Mecca in Saudi Arabia during the annual Hajj pilgrimage.
"In this moment I give assurances of my prayers. I unite myself with you all. A prayer to all mighty God all merciful," Francis said.