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Pilgrims killed in Iraq in a stampede in the day of Ashura

At least 31 people have been killed in a stampede during commemorations for the Shia holy day of Ashura in the Iraqi city of Karbala, Tuesday.

Another 100 people were injured and the death toll could rise because some of them are in critical condition.The stampede began when a walkway collapsed and hundreds of thousands were performing a ritual. Every year, millions of Shia Muslim pilgrims travel to Karbala for Ashura, which falls on the 10th of Muharram, the first month of the Islamic lunar calendar. During Ashura, pilgrims run down streets leading to the Imam Hussein Mosque in commemoration of the run from the ancient village of Tuwairij to Karbala that was undertaken during the 7th Century battle by the cousins of Hussein's half-brother Abbas

thousands-pilgrims-at-Kerbala
Thousands pilgrim at Kerbala

. Police officials are investigating the circumstances that led to the stampede. Karbala is around 62 miles south of Baghdad. The annual pilgrimage marking the death of the Prophet Mohammed's grandson Hussein in battle in 680 draws hundreds of thousands of Shi'ite Muslims to Kerbala from around the world. Celebrated Hussein, Prophet Mohammad's grandson, was killed in the year 680 in what would become Karbala by the forces of the Caliph Yazid in a major event that helped solidify the divide between what would become Islam's Sunni and Shia branches.

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