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November 15, 2013

41 killed in Iraq bombings on Ashura day

Top Story

November 15, 2013

KARBALA: Blasts, including a suicide bombing that ripped through Ashura processions, killed 41 people in Iraq on Thursday despite massive security measures.
The bloodshed came as a large number of devotees including foreigners thronged the central shrine city of Karbala.
A suicide bomber, who was disguised in a police uniform, struck in the Diyala province, north of Baghdad, killing 32 people and wounding 80, officials said.
It was the third attack of the day to target Shias.
Earlier, coordinated blasts in the town of Hafriyah, south of the capital, killed nine people, while twin bombings in the northern oil city of Kirkuk wounded five.
An estimated two million faithful gathered in Karbala, site of the mausoleum of Hazrat Imam Hussain (RA).
The provincial authorities expect two million pilgrims, including 200,000 from outside Iraq, will have visited Karbala in the 10 days leading up to Ashura, with all of the city’s hotels fully booked.
Security measures have been stepped up, with more than 35,000 soldiers and policemen deployed to Karbala and surrounding areas.
Concentric security perimeters have barred vehicles from entering the city, while helicopters hover overhead.