Thursday, July 29, 2010

Shia attacked in Karbala, 12 Martyred


A rocket attack has claimed several lives in the Iraqi shrine city of Karbala as the capital Baghdad witnessed more deadly bombings.
"Several mortars landed at 11:00 p.m. (0800 GMT ) on Tuesday, killing seven pilgrims and injuring 46, in a neighborhood a few kilometers northwest of the center of the city," AFP quoted a Karbala police officer as saying on  Wednesday.
The shells targeted Shia pilgrims who were coming from around the city to participate in the ceremony marking the birthday of Imam Mahdi -- the 12th Shia imam.
The mortar explosions also ripped through a number of nearby houses in the northwest of Karbala, which hosts the holy shrine of Imam Hossein's shrine -- the third Shia imam.
Meanwhile, a bomb detonated inside a restaurant at around 9:30 a.m. (0630 GMT) on Wednesday in Baghdad's northern neighborhood of Sadr City, killing five people.
A woman was among the victims of the blast which injured 13 more people, said officials from the defense and interior ministries who were speaking on condition of anonymity.
Meaning literally the mid-Shaaban visit, the al-Ziyara al-Shaabaniya is a pilgrimage to revive the memory of the birth of the Messiah-like Imam al-Mahdi, the 12th holiest figure for Shiites Muslims.
Karbala, with an estimated population of 572,300 people in 2003, is considered to be one of Shiite Muslims’ holiest cities.
The city, 110 km southwest of the Iraqi capital Baghdad, is one of Iraq’s wealthiest, profiting both from religious visitors and agricultural produce, especially dates.
Meanwhile A bomb has detonated inside a restaurant in the north of the Iraqi capital, leaving five people killed and more than a dozen others wounded.
The explosion happened at around 9:30 a.m. (0630 GMT) on Wednesday in Baghdad's Sadr city, AFP reported.
A woman was among the victims of the blast which injured 13 more people, said officials from the defense and interior ministries who were speaking on condition of anonymity.
It is made up of two districts, “Old Karbala,” the religious centre, and “New Karbala,” the residential district containing Islamic schools and government buildings.
At the center of the old city is al-Masjid al-Husseini, the tomb of Imam Hussein Ibn Ali, grandson of the Prophet Muhammad by his daughter Fatima al-Zahraa and Ali Ibn Abi Taleb.
Imam Hussein’s tomb is a place of pilgrimage for many Shiite Muslims. Many elderly pilgrims travel there to await death, as they believe the tomb to be one of the gates to paradise.
 

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