The Well of Zamzam (زمزم) is a well located within the Masjid al-Haram in Mecca, Saudi Arabia, 20 meters (66 feet) east of the Ka'aba, the holiest place in Islam. The well is 35 meters deep and topped by an elegant dome.
Millions of Muslims visit the well each year while performing the Hajj or Umrah pilgrimages, in order to drink its water and, in many cases, to take home some of its water for distribution among friends and relations believing the well and the water which it pumps to be miraculous.
However, in May 2011, a BBC investigation found that genuine Zamzam water taken from the well contained arsenic levels three times the legal limit, something which could contribute to increasing people's risk of cancer. In addition to the dangerous arsenic levels, the holy water contained high levels of nitrate and potentially harmful bacteria.
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- Contaminated Zam Zam holy water from Mecca sold in UK - BBC News, May 5, 2011
- Zamzam Studies and Research Centre - The Saudi Geological Survey Website
- S. H. A. Careem - The miracle of ZamZam - Sunday Observer, January 30, 2005
- Guy Lynn - Contaminated Zam Zam holy water from Mecca sold in UK - BBC News, May 5, 2011