Five million to-date step in Karbala for Arbaeen commemoration
By: Ismail Zabeeh
HOLY CITY OF KARBALA, Iraq: Number of Husseini pilgrims who have
entered the holy city of Karbala till February 1 to commemorate
Arbaeen Al-Husseini (the fortieth day after the martyrdom of Al-Imam
Aba Abdellah Al-Hussein, peace be on him) is five million, according
to Othaman Al-Ghanami, chief of Al-Forat Al-Ausat operations.
Arbaeen (Safar 20) falls this year in Iraq on February 5.
Officials hope that the number of pilgrims will increase to 12 million
on the day of Arbaeen.
Meanwhile, a female suicide bomber left at least 41 people martyred
and 106 others wounded on Monday in an attack on pilgrims in the Iraqi
capital who were trekking to the southern city of Karbala for Arbaeen,
an Interior Ministry source said.
Pilgrims clad in black and carrying red, black and green flags were
going to the shrine of Imam Hussein, the Prophet Mohammed's grandson.
"I started travelling on foot a week ago from al-Nasiriyah town," said
Halim al-Zamli, adding that he is happy he has now nearly reached the
"Security measures are tight and they made us feel safe while walking,
especially at night, near the empty desert roads," added the
41-year-old civil servant.
Iraqi authorities have deployed around 30,000 military and police
officers on the roads leading to Karbala, in both fixed and mobile
Tourist agencies in Karbala expect the arrival of 500,000 visitors
from outside Iraq to take part in the rituals, besides millions coming
from the different provinces of the country.
Pilgrims from Saudi Arabia, Iran, Bahrain, Kuwait, India and Pakistan
are expected to fill the 320 hotels in the holy city.
"My job is to provide pilgrims with rest, food and warmth. I feel I
have to help all the visitors of Imam Hussein be comfortable," said
Abu-Murtdada, the owner of one of the rest houses set up to provide
pilgrims with food, drinks as well as medical help, if needed.
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what you achieve through knowledge will remain even after you."MORE