Alwaght – Marchers from around the world continue walking to the holy city of Karbala in Iraq to mark Arabaeen of Imam Hussein.
The ceremony marks the fortieth day of martyrdom of the grandson of Prophet Muhammad.
The annual event over the past yearس has become the “largest human gathering” as Muslims, and even non-Muslimsو from various countries join in.
Figures suggest that every year around 40 million pilgrims arrive in Iraq to mark the landmark commemoration.
The event was banned under the former dictator Saddam Hussein. And after his fall, terrorist groups tried to hamper the flow of people towards the holy city.
The threats to the ceremony reached a peak when the ISIS terrorist group rose in Iraq and its bomb blasts killed several people walking to join the great pilgrimage.
Iran is the biggest foreign country from which people take part in the event.
Iran’s border officials said on Saturday that only within a week over three million Iranians cross the borders into Iraq. Shalamcha, Mehran, and Chazabeh border crossings in the south of the country are hosting Iranians and foreigners entering into Iraq.
The Iranian border authorities further said that foreign nationals have entered Iran for the commemoration. Muslims from Turkey, Azerbaijan, Pakistan, Afghanistan, and a couple of other countries arrived in Iran as the last station before Karbala.
Iran has accepted to issue temporary papers for foreign nationals who lacked credible documents or passports for Iraq entry, authorities confirmed.
Over the past years, Iraq established huge infrastructures to host the foreigners coming to mark Arabaeen. Iran has been doing the same job. Huge parking lots were constructed and hosting facilities were constructed to accommodate people.
The commemoration preparations come against the backdrop of protests in Iraq. Over the past week, Iraqi demonstrators took to the streets to protest high employment, corruption, and poor public services in the capital Baghdad and a couple of other cities.
They are now showing signs of relaxing as the “uniting” ceremony arrives. Iraqis say foreign-backed elements have taken advantage of the situation to bring back violence and terrorism to the country while the people’s demands are purely economic.