Mon Sep 5, 2011 2:28AM
Egyptian protesters outside the Saudi embassy in Cairo
Hundreds of Egyptians have gathered outside Saudi Arabia's embassy in Cairo to demand the expulsion of the Saudi ambassador.
The demonstrators staged the rally on Sunday to protest against the alleged mistreatment of Egyptians pilgrims in the kingdom, Egyptian newspaper Al-Masry Al-Alyoum reported.
“We demand the expulsion of the Saudi ambassador to Egypt,” read a large banner posted in front of the Saudi Embassy in Cairo.
Thousands of Egyptian pilgrims were stranded at Jeddah airport in Saudi Arabia. They accused the Saudi authorities of failing to arrange enough flights to get them home after the Umrah pilgrimage at the end of the holy month of Ramadan.
Some Egyptian pilgrims complained of being left outside the airport building in the heat of the sun for hours without access to any water.
A female pilgrim claimed she had been slapped in the face by a Saudi policeman while she was performing rituals in the city of Mecca.
Riyadh has denied the allegations, saying flight delays did not take place only for Egyptians.
Some pilgrims said the reason for the mistreatment by Saudi airport officials and security forces was that they were angry at Egyptians for their historic revolution that toppled the US-backed regime of Honsi Mubarak, who had close ties with Saudi Arabia.