Saudi Arabia's tent city, Mina, with its well-arranged rows of white tents spread over 20 square kilometers, represents a unique and remarkable blend of traditional and modern housing techniques in the arid country. Since 2015, Riyadh has come under criticisms for failing to do enough to deal with the humanitarian crisis in nearby Syria and Yemen. Western commentators have particularly called for displaced refugees to be housed in Saudi Arabia's tent city.
There are about 100,000 tents in Mina, which can reportedly host up to three million people. The air conditioned tents are reportedly fire-proof and come with bathroom and kitchen facilities.
Critics have argued that Saudi Arabia's tent city, which is about 2,150 miles from Syria, should be opened up to refugees to potentially cut down on the number of people making the perilous journey across the Mediterranean to Europe. This argument is made on the backdrop of talks that Saudi Arabia needs to do more to help refugees from nearby warring countries.
Saudi Arabia's tent city plays a key role in the annual Hajj pilgrimage, which is described as the largest annual gathering of people in the world.