Daily Tribune

 LATEST NEWS
 Top Stories
 Iraq
 South Asia Quake
 Hurricane Wilma
 U.S.
 World
 Business
 Personal Finance
 Technology
 Sports
 Entertainment
 Health
 Science
 Politics
 Washington
 Offbeat
 Weather
 Raw News
 NEWS SEARCH
 
 Text Archive
 SPECIAL SECTIONS
 Multimedia Gallery
 News Summary
 (AUDIO)
 News Summary
 (VIDEO)
 Today
 in History
 Video Gallery
 Photo Gallery
 PhotoWeek
 SportsWeek
 U.S. Census
 Database
 U.S. Crime
 Database
 Corrections
May 3, 4:47 AM EDT

Tens of thousands Shiite pilgrims converge on Baghdad shrine


AP Photo
AP Photo/Uncredited

Multimedia
Last U.S. combat troop leaves Iraq
Iraqi Election 2010: What's at Stake?
Returning Troops Find Alternative Motivations
U.S. Troop Casualties in Iraq
Related Stories
Coalition vows to build up further against Islamic State

US Defense Sec'y Carter: Campaign against IS 'far from over'

Navy SEAL killed in Iraq was close to disgraced grandfather

US combat death in Iraq reflects intensifying war

American killed in combat in Iraq was Navy SEAL

Interactive
Iraqi Communities in the U.S.

BAGHDAD (AP) -- Tens of thousands of Shiite pilgrims converged Tuesday on a golden-domed Shiite shrine in Baghdad to commemorate the anniversary of the death of a revered imam as authorities tightened security measures in the Iraqi capital amid concerns of more attacks by Sunni extremists.

Security forces blocked all major roads in Baghdad to protect the pilgrims, who have been making their way on foot this week to the shrine in the northern neighborhood of Kadhimiyah, where the 8th century Imam Moussa al-Kadhim is buried.

However, Sunni extremists, who see Shiite as apostates, have still managed to launch several attacks on the pilgrims, including a car bombing on Monday that killed 18 pilgrims and wounded 45 people. Shortly after that explosion, the Islamic State group claimed responsibility for the attack in an online statement.

On Tuesday, when the annual commemoration events culminate, some of the pilgrims in Kadhimiyah pounded their chests in grief while others flagellated themselves with chains or carried symbolic coffins of the imam, wrapped in a green cloth.

Inside the shrine, clerics recited the story of how al-Kadhim, a great-grandson of the Prophet Muhammad and one of the 12 holiest Shiite imams, was poisoned by the Abbasid caliph, Haroun al-Rasheed.

The annual Shiite pilgrimage has brought some ease to the country's simmering political crisis.

On Sunday, anti-government protesters decided to disband their demonstration - at least temporarily - in Baghdad's heavily fortified Green Zone that they had stormed a day earlier. Followers of influential Shiite cleric, Muqtada al-Sadr have been launching protests and sit-ins to demand for reforms and new government.

© 2016 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. Learn more about our Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.