- Title: Iraqi Shi'ites crowd in Kerbala for Ashura amid pandemic
- Date: 19th August 2021
- Summary: KERBALA, IRAQ (AUGUST 19, 2021) (REUTERS) VARIOUS OF CROWD CHANTING AND RAISING BANNERS WITH IMAM ABBAS SHRINE IN THE BACKGROUND CROWD CHANTING AND RAISING BANNERS VARIOUS OF CROWD RUNNING AND MARCHING TOWARDS IMAM HUSSEIN SHRINE, HOLDING FLAGS AND CHANTING (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) IRAQI SHI'ITE FROM MAYSAN PROVINCE, BALASEM RASHEED, SAYING: "God willing, we keep our promise, each year we come to the Tuwairij run and this is in response to what Imam Hussein sacrificed for humanity and freedom. And for the (Shi'ite) confession and Islam in general. This is why we come, to keep it alive at this time and for the martyrdom, despite the coronavirus pandemic." CROWD RUNNING INTO THE IMAM HUSSEIN SHRINE, HOLDING BANNERS, FLAGS AND CHANTING FEET RUNNING ON THE GROUND VARIOUS OF CROWD ENTERING SHRINE (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) IRAQI PARTICIPANT IN THE TUWAIRIJ RUN, ZAYED FALAH, SAYING: "This year the run was special because temperatures were high, so we remembered the heat of the battle (when Imam Hussein fought against and was killed by Caliph Yazid and his followers in the 7th century battle of Kerbala), the heat of the sun that Imam Hussein felt." VARIOUS OF PILGRIMS RUNNING INSIDE THE SHRINE, CHANTING AND HOLDING FLAGS AND BANNERS VARIOUS OF OVERVIEW OF CROWD RUNNING IN SHRINE
- Embargoed: 2nd September 2021 14:54
- Keywords: Ashura Iraq Kerbala Religion Tuwairij run
- Location: KERBALA, IRAQ
- City: KERBALA, IRAQ
- Country: Iraq
- Topics: Middle East,Religion/Belief,Society/Social Issues
- Reuters ID: LVA001EQY54JR
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text:Large crowds of Shi'ite pilgrims gathered in Iraq's Kerbala on Thursday (August 19) for the Tuwairij run held annually during Ashura, which commemorates the death of Imam Hussein, grandson of Prophet Mohammed.
Like last year, it was held amid the spread of the coronavirus in Iraq.
Although local and religious authorities called for the respect of preventive measures, most pilgrims seemed to not wear face masks as they were pouring into the shrine of Imam Hussein, holding religious banners and chanting.
Shi'ites from abroad this year were able to travel to Kerbala to attend Ashura. Last year, authorities had decided against granting visas to religious pilgrims in order to contain the spread of the coronavirus.
"This year, the run was special because temperatures were high, so we remembered the heat of the battle," one of the participants in the run, Zayed Falah, told Reuters. In Kerbala, temperatures reached about 45 degree Celsius on Thursday (August 19).
Ashura falls on the 10th day of the lunar calendar month of Muharram and commemorates the martyrdom in 680 AD of Imam Hussein Ibn Ali, one of the grandsons of the Prophet Mohammed, whose death symbolizes a wider struggle against oppression and tyranny.
On August 19, Iraq recorded 8,012 new cases of coronavirus infections, including 457 cases in Kerbala.
(Production: Ahmed Saeed, Abdullah Dhiaa Al-Deen, Charlotte Bruneau)
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