Millions Defy Threats, Mark Arbaeen in Karbala

Millions of pilgrims from around the world are in the holy Iraqi city of Karbala for the commemoration of Imam Hussein’s (AS) Arbaeen. The pilgrims have arrived in the city on foot, by cars, buses and many other means from Iraq, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Lebanon, Bahrain, Pakistan and countries as far as Nigeria. According to Iraqi authorities, some 17 million people have already arrived in the holy city and three million more were expected on Saturday. Iraqi forces have tightened security to protect the pilgrims against terrorist attacks. The Iraqi government has also adopted measures for an easier evacuation of pilgrims from Karbala. Pictures coming out of Iraq show mourners dressed in black, taking part in the world’s largest human gathering, around the holy shrine of Imam Hussein (A.S.) this weekend. Arbaeen marks 40 days after the martyrdom anniversary of Imam Hussein (PBUH), the grandson of Prophet Mohammad (PBUH). The commemoration is considered one of the biggest pilgrimages in the world with millions travel through Iraq, defying risks by Takfiri terrorists. Imam Hussein and 72 of his loyal companions, including family members, were martyred on Ashura, the tenth day of the lunar month of Muharram, in the battle of Karbala against the second Umayyad caliph, Yazid I, in 680 A.D. Imam Hussein was martyred after he refused to pledge allegiance to the tyrant ruler. Source: AlManar