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17 people killed this week in blasts targeting Shiite Muslims in Iraq

17 people killed this week in blasts targeting Shiite Muslims in Iraq
MGN Online
Thursday, November 14, 2013 - 4:37am

Seven people were killed and 25 injured Thursday in twin blasts in eastern Iraq, health officials said.

The attacks took place in Wasit as thousands of worshipers jammed the streets to attend festivals marking Ashura, the most important holy day on the Shiite Muslim calendar.

Ashura commemorates the death of Imam Hussein, grandson of the Prophet Mohammed.

Both blasts targeted a procession tent. During Ashura, pilgrims often set up tents to distribute water and food to passersby. The tents also give fellow pilgrims a place to rest, mourn, chant and pray before they march to Karbala, the holy shrine of Imam Hussein.

Wasit is about 100 miles (161 kilometers) southeast of Baghdad.

The explosions are the latest in a spate of attacks apparently targeting Shiite Muslims during this holy week.

On Wednesday, four coordinated blasts killed 10 people in Baquba, police said. Those explosions targeted a series of Shiite processions.

Imam Hussein's death was one of the events that helped create the schism between Sunni and Shiite Islam, the two main Muslim religious movements. He was killed in Karbala during battle in 680 A.D.


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