At least 16 die during Ashura rituals in Iraq's Kerbala

Reuters , Tuesday 10 Sep 2019

Iraqi Shi'ite Muslims burn a tent as they re-enact a scene from the 7th century battle of Kerbala during a ceremony marking Ashura in the holy city of Kerbala, Iraq, September 10, 2019. REUTERS

At least 16 people died and another 75 were wounded on Tuesday during the Shia Muslim religious rituals of Ashura in the Iraqi city of Kerbala, a Health Ministry spokesman said, offering no details as to how they died.

Ashura is the 10th day of the lunar month of Muharram when according to Islamic tradition the Prophet Mohammed’s grandson Imam Hussein was killed in battle in 680.

The rituals typically draw large crowds who gather at the shrine of Imam Hussein to commemorate his slaying. The rituals involve self-flagellation and stampedes have occurred in the past.

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