The first major bomb attack against Shi’ite pilgrims took place in northern Baghdad today, leaving scores dead or wounded. Overall, at least 56 Iraqis were killed and 138 more were wounded across the country. Meanwhile, hundreds of thousands of pilgrims continue to make their way to Karbala for Arbaeen observances despite the attacks.
Attacks continued against Shi’ite pilgrims walking to Karbala for Arbaeen observances. Southern Baghdad seemed especially dangerous for the pilgrims who are often traveling on foot. Overall, at least six Iraqis were killed and 17 more were wounded across the country.
An increase in violence targeting Shi’ite pilgrims added to today’s casualty figures. At least five Iraqis were killed and 41 more were wounded in sectarian and other assaults. Hundreds of thousands of Shi’ites are now traveling to Karbala for Arbaeen observances. Many are on foot, making them more vulnerable; however, the worst attack that occurred was against security personnel in Samarra. Meanwhile, a second prominent Iraqi leader is now threatening to declare a boycott of upcoming elections and perhaps throw the entire country into disarray. Also, the Islamic State in Iraq claimed responsibility for a blast at a crime lab on Tuesday.
As the Arbaeen holiday approaches, an increase in pilgrims visiting holy sites could put them at greater risk. The first confirmed attack against Shi’ite pilgrims, who were visiting from Iran, occurred today in the capital. At least four Iraqis were killed and eight more were wounded. Also, one Iranian woman was killed and five more were wounded. A U.S. soldier was also wounded in an attack.