Post link 05 November 2014, 5:29
Published time: November 04, 2014 21:03

A string of bombings and shootings marred the Ashura celebrations across the Muslim world – the main Shia holiday during which believers impassionedly gash their bodies with swords to show their grief for the suffering of Imam Hussein.

In Sunni-dominated Saudi Arabia the holiday was marred by a shooting that killed at least eight Shias in Eastern Province late on Monday.

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Shi'ite Muslims flagellate themselves during a Muharram procession to mark Ashoura in Kolkata November 4, 2014. (Reuters/Rupak De Chowdhuri)Shi'ite Muslims flagellate themselves during a Muharram procession to mark Ashoura in Kolkata November 4, 2014. (Reuters/Rupak De Chowdhuri)



The Saudi Interior Ministry said that security forces on Tuesday shot dead two suspected members of an armed group behind the attack.

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Iraqi Shiite Muslims gather outside the shrine of Imam Hussein -one of Shiite Islam's most revered figures- during the Ashura commemorations that mark his killing on November 4, 2014. (AFP Photo/Mohammed Sawaf)Iraqi Shiite Muslims gather outside the shrine of Imam Hussein -one of Shiite Islam's most revered figures- during the Ashura commemorations that mark his killing on November 4, 2014. (AFP Photo/Mohammed Sawaf)



A series of suicide bombings targeting Shia worshipers in Baghdad killed at least 16 people on Monday ahead of the celebrations in Iraq, medical officials said.

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A Shi'ite Muslim reacts as he takes part in a Muharram procession to mark Ashoura at Ajmer in the desert Indian state of Rajasthan November 4, 2014.(Reuters/Himanshu Sharma)A Shi'ite Muslim reacts as he takes part in a Muharram procession to mark Ashoura at Ajmer in the desert Indian state of Rajasthan November 4, 2014.(Reuters/Himanshu Sharma)



Islamic State militants who have gained control of a large part of the country and consider Shias heretics have reportedly claimed responsibility for this attack and the Sunday car bombing that killed at least 18 in the capital.

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Pakistani Shi'ite Muslim men flagellate to commemorate Ashoura in Peshawar November 4, 2014. (Reuters/Fayaz Aziz)Pakistani Shi'ite Muslim men flagellate to commemorate Ashoura in Peshawar November 4, 2014. (Reuters/Fayaz Aziz)



Shia Muslims worldwide are holding ten day celebrations marking the holiday which commemorates the death of Imam Hussein, Prophet Mohammad's grandson, in VII century.

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Lebanese Shiite Muslims take part in a self-flagellation procession during the Ashura commemorations that mark the killing of Imam Hussein -one of Shiite Islam's most revered figures- on November 4, 2014 in the southern Lebanese city of Nabatiyeh.(AFP Photo/Mahmoud Zayyat)Lebanese Shiite Muslims take part in a self-flagellation procession during the Ashura commemorations that mark the killing of Imam Hussein -one of Shiite Islam's most revered figures- on November 4, 2014 in the southern Lebanese city of Nabatiyeh.(AFP Photo/Mahmoud Zayyat)



Imam Hussein died in the battle of Karbala in 680 AD, the event which has been retold during the celebrations or reenacted as a lively theatrical performance since the XIX century.

Among the rituals is the tatbir which is performed by cutting oneself with a form of a sword on the head in remembrance of the innocent blood of Imam Hussein.






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Some believers also hit their backs and chests with blades attached to chains.

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Pakistani Shiite Muslim devotees participate in ritual self-flagellation during a religious procession marking Ashura in Quetta on November 4 (AFP Photo/Banaras Khan)Pakistani Shiite Muslim devotees participate in ritual self-flagellation during a religious procession marking Ashura in Quetta on November 4 (AFP Photo/Banaras Khan)



Different views on the events of the battle of Karbala and Imam Hussein’s death is one of the points that define Shi’ism and its rift with Sunni Islam.

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Shi'ite Muslims tap their heads during the Ashoura ceremony held in Beirut November 4, 2014. (Reuters/Jamal Saidi)Shi'ite Muslims tap their heads during the Ashoura ceremony held in Beirut November 4, 2014. (Reuters/Jamal Saidi)


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Topic edited 1 times, last edit by RouTe, 07 November 2014, 0:15  

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