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Saudi officials would not allow female Nigerian pilgrims into the country because they traveled without men.
Hundreds of Nigerian women are being kept in poor conditions at an airport in Saudi Arabia, the Associated Press reported. The women were attempting to take a pilgrimage to Mecca. But instead, they were detained at a Saudi airport because they came unaccompanied by men.
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Saudi authorities have deported 150 of the female Nigerian pilgrims and detained another 1,000, Reuters reported. The women who were deported arrived in tears back at the Nigerian airport. "We were not given water to drink; there was no food for us and we remained glued on our seats in our aircraft for all those hours," Hajia Amina Musa told Reuters.
Some of the women were detained from Friday through Monday at the airport and weren't supplied with food or water until Nigerian officials found out and intervened, according to Sahara Reporters. Today Nigerian President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan set up a five-member team to negotiate with Saudi authorities, Agence France-Presse reported.